Calls for Cornwall tourist tax after two dogs get stuck on cliff


Calls for Cornwall tourist tax after two dogs get stuck on cliff

Two coastguard rescue teams carried out a "complex" rescue mission in Newquay, Cornwall, and sent a cliff technician down the abyss to recover both

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Two coastguard rescue teams carried out a “complex” rescue mission in Newquay, Cornwall, and sent a cliff technician down the abyss to recover both pets at the same time. It’s believed the dogs may have been off their leads when their owners were walking them along the coastal path, which is popular with tourists.

The rescue mission took nearly three hours and has led to residents in Newquay venting their frustration at the behaviour of some tourists.

It has not been confirmed, however, that the dog owners were tourists.

One Cornwall Live reader suggested a tourism tax and posted: “Perhaps we should make it a tourist issue. Cornwall’s tourism openly encourages owners to bring their dogs for extra tourism and yet never warns of the perils of coastal walking.”

Another wrote: “Totally agree, maybe tourist tax to help cover the costs of visitors’ stupidity.”

A third stated: “Make these stupid people pay for these services.”

It’s believed the dogs were on a walk on Monday evening and became stuck during the journey.

But the coastguards from Padstow were called to support the Newquay unit at 3.29am today.

“At 3.29am on Tuesday, June 14, the team were tasked to support Newquay coastguard search and rescue team, who were attending an incident north of Watergate Bay involving two dogs who were stuck down a cliff. A full-time Senior Coastal Operations Officer from Falmouth and Newquay RNLI Lifeboats were also tasked to the scene,” a spokesman for the Padstow team said today.

“This was a complex operation for the Coastguard Rescue Teams, as it was clear that the dogs could not be recovered individually without the dog remaining behind becoming agitated and potentially at risk of falling further down the cliff face.

“Accordingly, two cliff top rope rescue setups were established, enabling the Newquay and Padstow teams to each deploy a cliff technician down to the dogs so they could be recovered at the same time. The RNLI lifeboat from Newquay provided safety cover and monitoring just offshore.

“With some coaxing from the two cliff techs, the dogs were safely secured in separate animal rescue bags and recovered to the top of the cliff, to be reunited with their relieved owners. Thankfully both dogs (and their owners) were able to walk away from this incident unscathed. Padstow CRT were back on station at 6.30am ready for the next tasking.

“We should be clear that the primary role of Coastguard Rescue Teams attending such incidents is to prevent an accident or injury to the owners (who may be attempting to recover their dog), not specifically to recover the animals themselves. If you are walking your dog on the coast path, please ensure that it is secured on a lead at all times, no matter how “trustworthy” you think he or she is.

“Experience tells us that it only takes a second for your reliable dog to surprise you, and perhaps not come home safe. If you see someone in distress on the beach, coastline or sea … Call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.”