Matt Halliday has called the Coastguard “his heroes” after they found him suffering from hypothermia after being caught in a mudslide during a walk to clear his head in Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland
A dad out for a walk had “60 minutes to live” when he was found by the Coastguard when he was engulfed by a mudslide in a 14-hour order.
Dad-of-four Matt Halliday’s morning stroll turned deadly when the weather suddenly worsened and the tide came in.
He was struck down with severe hypothermia and suffered a head injury when his temporary shelter collapsed before he was covered in mud.
In a desperate bid to survive he climbed over rocks and managed to call 999.
He was eventually by emergency crews and airlifted to hospital before being discharged the next day, the Daily Record reported.
The 51-year-old, who had been walking along The Corsewall Loop in dumfries and Galloway when disaster struck, said: “Had the coastguard arrived an hour later I would be dead.
“I know the area, near Stranraer, really well and it’s popular with dog walkers and locals.
“I had appropriate clothing and a fully-charged phone, I planned to be home within the hour as a storm was coming in later that day. Little did I know how things would turn out.
“I took shelter under a kind of overhang of tree trunks and other materials.
“That was the last thing I remembered before waking up.”
The incident happened in 2021 and Matt decided to share his story to ensure others take care while out walking.
He added: “”I wasn’t fully with it, so I don’t think I fully understood what had happened.
“I feel worse for my wife Fiona, and friends who were out looking for me.
“I’d been away since 9am and didn’t get to hospital till 11pm that night – that’s how long I was out there for. It must have been terrifying for them.”
“I owe the Coastguard my life, they are my heroes.”
To thank mercy crews Matt walked 22 miles over four days, raising nearly £2,000 for charities that assist HM Coastguard.
Senior Coastal Operations Officer Richard Morgans said: “It doesn’t matter how well you know an area and even the best prepared of people can still get caught out on our coasts.
“Luck was just not on Matt’s side that day and it was a combination of small events that led to the perfect storm that caught him out.
“We’d say that if anyone’s in trouble around our coasts at any time of the day or night, just give us a call on 999.”