Elderly Scots couple freed from 12ft snowdrift surrounding home

The couple, aged 70 and 71, had run out of firewood for heating and were cut off from their coal shed by the time they were freed. Picture: PA
The couple, aged 70 and 71, had run out of firewood for heating and were cut off from their coal shed by the time they were freed. Picture: PA
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An elderly couple and their two dogs have been dug out of their house in southern Scotland after becoming trapped by 12ft (3.6m) snow drifts around the property.

Two police officers and a mountain rescue team manged to dig them out of the secluded farm house near West Linton after they called for help on Friday afternoon.

The couple, aged 70 and 71, had run out of firewood for heating and were cut off from their coal shed by the time they were freed.

They were found to be in good health and were taken to stay with a friend, along with the two dogs.

Sergeant Davey Rourke said: “The house is in a dip so was slowly being buried in snow drifts up to 12ft in height.

“We dug down to one of the doors where there was just 5ft of snow and thankfully got them out.”

Dave Wright, from Tweed Valley Mountain Rescue, said he had not seen such weather conditions for years.

He added: “Quite rapidly they were getting into a dangerous situation without heat.

“They were perfectly alright when we got them out the house, they were a little bit surprised by how the situation escalated so quickly and I don’t think they had experienced anything like that before, but this type of weather hasn’t been seen for quite some time.

“We’re obviously used to working in the mountains and hills, but we haven’t seen conditions like this at ground level for a long time, it trumps 2010 and 2001 for the level of snow depth and how the drifts have been piling up.”

He said: “Frozen water and supplies would have been another issue and that’s why one of the messages we’re pushing out is for people to check on neighbours in rural communities, particularly the older generation.”

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