Moment police use thermal imaging to find missing pensioner who got trapped in brambles

Mr Bradley was missing for three hours and was found curled into a ball in the darkness

Aisha Rimi
Monday 29 November 2021 19:10

The 76-year-old strayed off a walking course and fell into a ditch

This is the moment a missing pensioner who feared for his life after getting trapped in dense shrubland was found by police using a thermal imaging camera.

A huge search operation was launched after Lynton Bradley, 76, strayed off the path he was walking on in Coleshill, in Warwickshire, earlier this month.

The pensioner got stuck in a ditch and was unable to bend to free himself from the sharp brambles he got his foot stuck in.

The 76-year-old then called his son Steve, from Peterborough, to tell him that he was trapped in the shrubland.

Mr Bradley was missing for three hours and was found curled into a ball in the darkness by police using a thermal imaging camera.

Officers had traced Mr Bradley’s phone signal to a wooded area near the M6 in Warwickshire, just before his phone battery went flat.

Footage released by West Midlands Police shows the force’s specialist search unit hovering above Mr Bradley in a helicopter on 12 November.

Officers on the ground - PCs Lee Parker and Adam Kendall - then found Mr Bradley, who had lost a shoe in the fall and was checked over by paramedics at the scene. Despite some scratches and a sore foot, he was not seriously injured.

In the video, the officers can be heard asking Mr Bradley: “Are you sure you’re warm enough? I’m going to put this coat over you.”

One said to him: “Are you okay? You’re okay, we’ve got you - don’t worry.

“Has your phone battery run out? It’s a godsend that you had it with you - that’s how we found you. We tracked your phone. So please, please, please always have your phone with you wherever you go.”

Chief Superintendent Sarah Burton said: “It was a great team effort to find Lynton - this was a challenging area to search, a vast area of fields with thick set borders, deep trenches, water and dense undergrowth.

“Their combined professionalism, dedication and commitment undoubtedly saved his life. All the officers involved should be very proud of their actions.”

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