98 per cent of all mountain rescues in Spain are triggered through fault of the expeditionists.
The Grupos de Rescate e Intervención en Montaña (GREIM) (Mountain Rescue and Intervention Groups) of the Spanish Civil Guard who are the successors to the old Skiing-Climbing Groups founded in 1967, together with the Sección de Rescate e Intervención en Montaña (Sereim) (Mountain Rescue and Intervention Section) have revealed that in Granada alone there have been 82 rescues and three fatalities during 2019.
Of the more than eighty rescues, only 2.5% were fortuitous.
The overwhelming majority of the other mountaineering accidents are due to lack of experience, inadequate physical preparation or failure to adequately prepare the excursion in the mountain.
The main functions of the Mountain Rescue and Intervention Groups are mountain rescue and cave rescue, and police work in mountain conditions. Lieutenant Rubén Santos of Sereim Granada has emphasised that the 98 per cent of the accidents that take place in the mountains could have been avoided, stressing the importance of planning an exit route, informing relatives or friends of the route destination to be taken and to approach the outing with the necessary physical fitness and the knowledge of the equipment that is needed in the mountain.
The Sereim of Granada is made up of 16 agents specialised in mountaineering and in the mountains of the area, who work in collaboration with the seven members of the Civil Guard air unit, which has participated in more than half of the rescues to evacuate the victims by helicopter.
Santos has also focused on the use of new technologies as an ally in the event of a disaster and has recommended both the installation of apps for mobile geolocation and the acquisition of basic notions for interpreting and transmitting data to assist in a rescue if need be.
Highlighting once more that the majority of accidents that take place in the mountains is due to individual overestimation of his / her own abilities as a mountaineer, the use of inadequate or old material, the lack of technical aptitude or physical preparation, as well as inaccurate consultation of the meteorological conditions before embarking on the expedition, a combination of preventable factors that consequently lead to a high percentage of vital rescues.