‘No signs of life’ in man dangling from tower in Cumbria, police say

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Police in Cumbria have told Sky News that there are “no signs of life” from the man trapped on top of the 290ft chimney in Carlisle.

Police have been working since the early hours of the morning to reach the man who is currently at the top of Dixon’s Chimney.

Photos and videos from the area show the man seemingly hanging by his legs from the top of the tower.

Emergency vehicles block the road near to Dixon's Chimney in Carlisle, Cumbria, where a man, whose condition is currently unknown, continues to hang upside down from the top of the chimney 270ft up.
Image: Roads are closed off in the area

It is not known how he made it up the former cotton mill tower, or why he is there, but emergency services were called at around 2.20am on Monday to the scene, where the man was found.

Superintendent Matt Kennerley of Cumbria Police said emergency services are “very concerned” and “working tirelessly” to bring him down safely.

He added that police know the identity of the individual, and officers are working to contact his family.

A 90m (295ft) industrial cherry picker has arrived at the scene following an appeal by police and firefighters.

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The latest plan is to get a rescue team to the summit of the chimney, so rescue teams can continue their operation from there.

Mr Kennerley added that the operation could still be a while, even when the teams reach the man.

The superintendent had previously said that earlier rescue attempts by using a helicopter had failed.

“So far the multi-agency response has seen us utilise technology including drones,” he said

“A helicopter has been used to try to rescue the man and efforts have been made to try to drop a technical rescue team onto the chimney to rescue him.

“These two attempts have not been successful so far due to concerns over how securely the man is attached to the ladder at the top of the chimney – and the potential danger of back-drafts from the helicopter.

“This is an extremely complex and rare incident and requires the specialisms of all the agencies to work together.”

He added police officers are with the man’s family offering them support.

Roads remain closed at Stanhope Road, Charlotte Street and Shaddongate where it meets Bridge Street (A595).

Police have also asked the public to avoid the area.

John McVay, Cumbria Fire and Rescue area manager, said: “This is a very complex and difficult process given the obvious dangers to the man and the extreme difficulty in gaining access to him in a way which will keep him and emergency services safe.

“I can assure the public that the emergency services are working tirelessly and effectively together to resolve these issues safely for all and that the protection of life is our first priority.

“I ask people impacted by the incident and the road closures to continue to show patience.”

Residents could reportedly hear a man shouting and wailing from the area as early as 1am.

At 12.20pm, Cumbria Police tweeted to say that a rescue had not yet been possible due to the man’s “precarious” position on the tower as well as the potential for a back-draft, which could worsen the problem.

The Grade II listed Dixon’s Chimney was built in 1836 as part of Shaddon Mill, and at the time, was the eighth tallest chimney in the world.

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Cumbria Police say ‘no signs of life’ in man dangling from 290ft Dixon’s Chimney

Police in Cumbria have told Sky News that there are “no signs of life” from the man trapped on top of the 290ft chimney in Carlisle. Police have been working since the early hours of the morning to reach the man who is currently at the top of Dixon’s Chimney.

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