28th January, 2020   Search of Shafts and Adits at Allt Cystanog, Carmarthen  


At 13:30 on Tuesday 28th of January, the team received a request for underground search support by Western Beacons MRT and Brecon MRT for a joint missing person search that had been running since the previous evening.  A 55 year old man had been reported missing in the Carmarthen area and the team was asked to search several adits and shafts on the outskirts of Carmarthen that had been identified as possible locations for him.    


Fortunately one of our team members had extensive experience in the area, and was able to provide detailed information and surveys that helped ensure that all possible sites were searched effectively.  A SMWCRT Warden (who lives locally) was initially deployed to the Mountain Rescue RV point, and two other team members who had prior experience of the area were sent to support the search efforts.  A team member headed to Penwyllt to prepare the equipment required by the search effort, while the Land-rover returned from a training event.  When the Land-rover arrived at Penwyllt, the equipment was loaded and then taken to the search site with another 4 team members on board.   


The SMWCRT Warden arrived on site at the Search RV point by 14:30, initially planning to act as an On Site Co-ordinator & Assistant Controller for SMWCRT. However, the Mountain Rescue Control were extremely keen that the 5 underground sites they were aware of should be searched and cleared before dark. As our Warden knew the sites quite well, being based locally, he agreed to search the 5 requested plus 2 more he knew, with support from Mountain Rescue team members. The relevant shafts and adits were searched in the area of woodland between the road and the top of the ridge and nothing was found.  


Once further support had arrived, both of whom were very familiar with the site, a further 3 sites were searched, including a 70 metre deep ‘water shaft’. Again nothing was found. The SMWCRT Landover arrived around 17:30 with further support and equipment and whilst waiting for the initial search team to return to the RV, team members searched a couple of additional nearby sites that were close to the road.  On site, we received great support from Mountain Rescue Team members and the Police who were present. We were pleased to have searched 11 sites by 6.15pm, having only been called around 5 hours earlier.  


A final SARCALL message was sent to the team to stand down at 6:50pm after confirming with the onsite team members that we had completed our role.  In total 9 team members were deployed, with a further 13 available on standby if the incident required it.