The Merlin Tower: Questions I Want Answered

Within this news item, there appears that there are some unanswered questions about the rescue services. 

1) The Tower failure happened at around 4 p.m. The Coastguard helicopter arrived at approximately 7 p.m. after the Fire Service accessed that they did not have the equipment to rescue the people trapped inside. That is quite some time, 3 hours to be precise, before the first person was airlifted by winch. Thankfully, there was no fire involved.

2) During the airlift of the 14 people inside the Tower, the helicopter had to go to base to refuel, so extended the overall rescue to approximately 10 p.m., when the last of the people were rescued.

3) Where did the SAR helicopter come from.

4) Where did the SAR helicopter refuel

5) Like the Grenfell Tower rescue, the Fire Service did not have a platform high enough to perform a rescue, even in the event of fire.

My concern is with all these points, however, to keep to the role of the Coastguard helicopter, it seems that recent events point to the huge mistake in removing the SAR base at Portland.

Richard Drax seems happy with the fact that the base has been sold to a private company to train German SAR helicopter pilots, however, they will have no role in Search and Rescue in the UK. The base, it is said, could be used to refuel British Coastguard helicopters on a mission, at a price.

6) My last question should concern all taxpayers, how much did Heli Ops, the private company that has bought the site, pay for it. Bearing in mind that 12 years ago, £4 Million was invested in new hangar and sea defences around the site.

Roger Mac