Multiple agencies rescue children from Thames mud

River Thames, North Woolwich. Image: Google Satellite.

River Thames, North Woolwich. Image: Google Satellite.

Multiple agency intervention on the River Thames foreshore has rescued children stuck in the mud.

One 10 year old was extracted after sinking in mud at Newham by the Met Police River Thames Unit, supported by RNLI Tower and National Police Air Service London helicopter.

A total of four children were rescued from the mud at North Woolwich and taken to hospital after being found wet, cold and muddy.

The London Fire Brigade and London Ambulance Service were also involved in the rapid and successful rescue operation.

Met Marine Support Unit. Image: Met Police

Met Marine Support Unit. Image: Met Police

New Scotland Yard has revealed that thermal imagery from a police helicopter helped officers from the Marine Policing Unit rescue the 10-year-old boy stranded waist-high in the Thames riverbed.

Police in Newham were alereted at ten minutes to 11 on Monday morning to reports of young boys trapped in the foreshore of the River Thames.

Officers converged on Sunderland Point, E16, between Galleons Point and Woolwich Pier.

Three boys, two aged eight and a ten-year-old had become submerged in the mud after they ventured out to play.

A fourth boy, aged eight, who did not go onto the foreshore, raised the alarm after flagging down a member of the public nearby who called police.

Both of the eight-year-old boys managed to scramble out of the mud unscathed as police arrived.

The Air Support Unit quickly located the trapped child at Sunderland Point.

Officers from Newham, supported by the Marine Policing Unit (MPU) on roadside patrol, were directed by the police helicopter using thermal imaging to locate the stranded 10-year-old boy.

He was found trapped, unable to move and waist high in the mud.

A rope line was dropped over the 30ft wall by the MPU officers and the boy managed to secure the loop around his waist.

He was dragged for a distance of 25 metres until he reached some steps, where he was rescued.

PC Richard Burn from the Marine Policing Unit said:

Thankfully the tide was out, so rescuing the boy was difficult but ultimately successful. If the tide had been coming in it might have been a different outcome. All the boys are safe now with their parents and are cold if not a little scared by today’s events.

I would like to remind the public of the dangers of venturing onto the Thames foreshore when the tide is out. If you do, you may become stranded when the tide comes in or get stuck in dangerous mud.

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