Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland rescuers tell their snow stories

Police, the RAF, teams of volunteers and neighbours have helped rescue people snowed in to remote locations, and bring them food packages and essentials.

From across Northern Ireland, rescuers have been telling the BBC their stories.

Brian Johnston, Red Cross

Image caption Red Cross volunteers have been delivering food parcels

"People are very thankful that they're getting these items. A lot of them are farmers and their livestock are out there and they can't get them back in - they can't do what we're trying to do for them.

"It seems strange in the 21st century that we're still at this type of game."

Alison Ferguson, PSNI

"We've had people who haven't been able to get to their medication so we've been arranging to have that delivered, and we've also used helicopters in the most inaccessible areas to try to get supplies to those homes."

Ian Culbert, NI 4x4 Response Network

Image caption Drivers of 4x4 vehicles have got together to help bring food to people across the snow

"Most of the volunteers are very experienced offloaders.

"We've done what we could, but sometimes we've had to give up - we just haven't been able to get everywhere we wanted to."

John Devlin, Northern Ireland Electricity

"The weight of the snow took the trees down and the trees came down over the lines and that took the lines down. We're just ready now to switch things back on again.

"The thing is, the conditions are very bad. There are up to 10ft drifts of snow. Nothing works. It's hard to even walk in it.

"We're over from Donegal and we never see conditions quite as bad as this in Donegal."

Victor McCullough, farmer in Carnalbanagh

Image caption Victor McCullough opened the road to a dairy farm in Carnalbanagh, using his digger

"I start (operating my digger) early in the morning and work until late at night.

"We'll just see how we go for tiredness - if we get on well or get tired."

Graham Craig, farmer in Banagher

Image caption Graham Craig and his other neighbours brought supplies on foot to Brendan Kelly in the Sperrins

"With all the snow drifting, you know, it just drifts off the fields and fills the lanes. It just leaves it very hard to get in anywhere.

"Brendan is living remote up here and he needs a bit of help - he's older as well."

Mr Craig walked for two miles to bring supplies to his neighbour 67-year-old Brendan Kelly and his family. Their house was inaccessible by vehicle.

Richard Belshaw, JF Diggers

Image caption Richard Belshaw came to the rescue of a couple who had been snowed in for five days.

"It's horrendous, it really is horrendous."

A reporter asked Mr Belshaw if he thought he could dig a snowbound couple out.

"Yes," he said. "It mightn't just all happen today, but I'll not leave here tonight till I get as much done as I can."

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