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Motoring news

Audi’s new Q cars

April 12 2017

Another week, another new Audi. Two new Audis, in fact. The German car maker has announced a couple more additions to its Q line up of SUVs. The Q4 is a coupe-SUV hybrid that will go up against the BMW X4 and Mercedes GLC Coupe. As its name suggests, it’ll be positioned between the compact Q3 and bigger Q5. At the other end of the scale is the Q8, which will go head to head against the Range Rover. It’s lower and sleeker than the Q7 Audi is also producing. In concept form, it sat only four people, although it seems likely the production version will be a five seater. There’s a 630 litre boot as well. Eagle eyed Audi followers will notice the only SUV slots left to fill are the Q1 and Q6. Watch this space...

Angus & The Mearns

Dundee jihadist sanctions welcomed by former White House official

April 2 2016

A former White House security official has described sanctions imposed against a Dundee-born jihadist as “quite remarkable”. The US and Saudi Arabian authorities have sanctioned four individuals and two groups suspected of raising funds for terrorists, including James Alexander McLintock who grew up in Dundee and became a Taliban sympathiser. The US Treasury said McLintock’s Pakistan-based Al-Rahmah Welfare Organization is a front that provides money for al Qaida, the Taliban, Lashkar-e-Taiba and other Afghan extremists groups under the guide of helping orphans. David Mortlock, a former National Security Council official, said the “united front” from the US and Saudi Arabia could now inspire other Gulf Arab states to step up. “The United States frequently acts together with the European Union or the United Kingdom, but most other countries prefer to act through the UN Security Council process for terrorism designations,” said Mr Mortlock. “Given that most Gulf countries don’t have their own sanctions programs, it sends a strong message to other governments in the region when Saudi is willing to act outside of the UN system,” said Mr Mortlock. McLintock’s parents still live in Arbroath but there was no answer at the address yesterday. He received about $180,000 from donors in Britain between April 2011 and April 2012 and also received money from charities in the Persian Gulf and the United Kingdom, the US Treasury said. McLintock also is suspected of smuggling cash to insurgents in Afghanistan and moving parts for improvised explosive devices between Pakistan and Afghanistan. US officials have long praised what they say is steady and increasing cooperation from the Saudi monarchy on ways to disrupt Islamist terrorists’ financial networks. Peter Harrell, a former State Department official now with the Center for a New American Security, said that in 2014, the Saudis adopted a new terror finance law that made the actions possible. “You could say that we are beginning to see payoff from years of slow but relentless US government work with the Saudis on these issues,” he said. Sanctions imposed on Thursday mean McLintock is on the department’s list of specially designated global terrorists, freezes any property he has within US jurisdiction and bans Americans from doing business with him. The department said McLintock also regularly met with Taliban and other militant commanders for the purpose of financing their attacks against Afghan government targets in Kunar Province. During this same period McLintock also financed Taliban militants in Afghanistan and prepared madrassa students for travel to fight in Afghanistan. McLintock received about £125,000 (180,000 US dollars) from donors in Britain between April 2011 and April 2012 and also received money from charities in the Persian Gulf and the United Kingdom, the US Treasury said. The 52-year-old ex-Lawside Academy pupil is thought to have converted to Islam in his 20s and had become a devout Muslim since then. He settled in Bradford after fighting with the Mujahideen against the Russians in the 1980s where he lived a “spartan, modest and simple life” with his wife and children. McLintock was detained in 2009 by Pakistani authorities before being released after several days. It was his second high-profile brush with the authorities. In 2001, he was arrested in the tribal belt while crossing from Afghanistan as US forces hunted terror mastermind Osama bin Laden

Dundee

Muslim group denies link to ‘Tartan Taliban member’

April 7 2016

A leading UK Muslim charity linked to a Tayside man suspected of raising funds for al Qaida has denied supporting any illegal activities. The 1st Ethical Charitable Trust spoke to The Courier after James McLintock’s Al Rahmah Welfare Organisation website indicated that RWO collaborated with it on a humanitarian project in Pakistan as recently as February. Ex-Lawside Academy pupil James McLintock, who changed his name to Yaqoob Mansoor Al-Rashidi, is the president of the Al Rahmah Welfare Organisation (RWO) which the US Treasury has alleged is providing money for al Qaida, the Taliban, Lashkar-e-Taiba and other Afghan extremist groups under the guise of helping orphans. McLintock is on the department’s “specially designated global terrorist” list which freezes any property he has within US jurisdiction and bans Americans from doing business with him. The US Treasury said McLintock received about $180,000 from donors in Britain between April 2011 and April 2012 and that he also received money from charities in the Persian Gulf and the UK. Established in 2003, 1st Ethical works in partnership with the leading 200 mosques and Muslim faith schools nationwide on “money matters and social responsibility”. McLintock posted on the Al Rahmah website in February 2016 that RWO “in partnership with 1st Ethical and other British donors” undertook a humanitarian project in Waziristan. But Arslan Baz of Bolton-based 1st Ethical said neither RWO nor McLintock were currently supported by his organisation and “we have not donated to RWO in this timeframe”. McLintock then said 1st Ethical’s involvement with the charity ended in 2011 and blamed “mistakes” on his “new website”. He has also denied he was a jihadist, saying: “I have been doing charity work for the past 20 years.” He also described comments made against him by North East Scotland Conservative candidate Alex Johnstone in Monday’s Courieras “despicable”.String of charities listed on websiteSeveral partner charities are listed on the RWO website run by James McLintock. They include the International Islamic Charitable Organisation (IICO), the Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahayan Foundation in UAE, King Abdullah’s Relief Campaign for (the) Pakistani People, Welfare and Development Organisation (WDO), World Assembly of Muslim Youth (WAMY) and Qatar Charity. RWO’s website also posted two letters from McLintock thanking King Abdullah’s Relief Campaign for the Pakistani People (KARCPP) for the aid it supposedly received and then distributed. But McLintock has now said that neither KARCPP or the UAE president’s Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahayan Foundation are still involved with his charity. All of the charities listed as “external relations” were contacted by The Courier but did not respond to requests to comment.Schoolboy who turned into ‘Taliban’As a boy growing up in Dundee, James McLintock was raised a Catholic and attended Lawside Academy. But it was while studying at Edinburgh University in the early 1980s that he embarked on the path that would see him fighting against communist Russians in Afghanistan and Serbs in Bosnia. But it was not until 2001 that the former Dundee schoolboy earned himself the nickname the ‘Tartan Taliban’. He was arrested on Christmas Eve at a checkpoint near Afghanistan’s border and held until he had been interrogated by intelligence services. Eventually McLintock was released when it was proved that he had been working for a charity. However, Wikileaks documents released two years ago suggested that McLintock had links with al Qaida leader Ali Muhammad Abdul Aziz al-Fahkri. The documents also suggested he had helped run terror training camps in Afghanistan.

Dundee

Dundee-born jihadist James McLintock added to US list of ‘global terrorists’

April 1 2016

A Dundee-born man suspected of raising funds for al Qaida has been added to a US Treasury list of global terrorists. James Alexander McLintock was accused by the US of raising money for terrorist groups, along with three other men and two groups, AP reported. McLintock said in an interview with The Scotsman in 2004 that he had been a “committed Jihadist” who fought in Afghanistan and Bosnia. Now thought to be 52, he told the newspaper he had converted to Islam in his twenties, changed his name to Yaqub McLintock and lived with his family in Pakistan. He said he started a charity and a news agency in the 1990s to show what was “really happening” in Afghanistan and Pakistan. The US Treasury said his Pakistan-based Al-Rahmah Welfare Organization (RWO) is a front that provides money for al Qaida, the Taliban, Lashkar-e-Taiba and other Afghan extremists groups under the guide of helping orphans. Sanctions imposed on Thursday mean McLintock is on the department’s list of specially designated global terrorists, freezes any property he has within US jurisdiction and bans Americans from doing business with him, AP reported. Saudi Arabia also designated the same six suspected of having ties across Afghanistan, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia. The US Treasury said in a statement: “As of early 2013, McLintock recruited Afghan insurgents to obtain photos of children, Afghan identity documents, and cell phone numbers to create falsified dossiers used to obtain donations for RWO, which were funnelled to support al Qaida. “As early as 2010, McLintock used RWO and the cover of providing stipends to Afghan orphans to finance the Taliban’s militant activities in Kunar Province, Afghanistan.” The department said McLintock also regularly met with Taliban and other militant commanders. McLintock received about £125,000 (180,000 US dollars) from donors in Britain between April 2011 and April 2012 and also received money from charities in the Persian Gulf and the United Kingdom, the US Treasury said.

Dundee

Dundee jihadist denies claims orphanage is front for terror group funding

April 4 2016

Dundee-born Muslim convert James McLintock has “categorically denied” allegations made by the US Treasury that his Pakistani orphanage is providing money for extremist groups. Ex-Lawside Academy pupil James McLintock, 52, who changed his name to Yaqoob Mansoor Al-Rashidi, is the president of the Al Rahmah Welfare Organization (RWO) which the US Treasury has alleged is providing money for al Qaida, the Taliban, Lashkar-e-Taiba and other Afghan extremist groups under the guise of helping orphans. Sanctions imposed by the US Treasury mean McLintock is on the department’s “specially designated global terrorist” list which freezes any property he has within US jurisdiction and bans Americans from doing business with him. McLintock told The Courier: “RWO and I categorically deny all accusations made by the US. “We have not been involved in the funding of terrorist organisations. “We are currently seeking legal advice and will respond in due course.” The US Treasury said on Thursday that as early as 2010, McLintock used RWO and the cover of providing stipends to Afghan orphans to finance the Taliban’s militant activities in Kunar Province, Afghanistan. It said he recruited Afghan insurgents to obtain photos of children, Afghan identity documents and mobile phone numbers which were used to “create falsified dossiers” to help “obtain donations for RWO, which were funnelled to support al Qaida”. However McLintock said his organisation’s help “reaches all those in need crossing possible sectarian, racial and ideological divides”. In a statement on the RWO website, he said: “Our activities range from the direct support of orphan through regular financial support, the building of orphanages, the digging of wells, the building of mosques, improving education, emergency relief after the Kashmir and Ziarat earthquakes and several floods and many more humanitarian works. “Al Rahmah has no affiliation with any political organisation and our help reaches all those in need crossingpossible sectarian, racial and ideological divides, our activities are being done in all poverty stricken parts in Pakistan. “We utilise the local population in our construction efforts thus boosting the local economy. We conduct our efforts in concert with the local authorities and local dignitaries because of their understanding of the situation and the needs of their region. “The donors for our project are mostly native Pakistanis living in the UK who donate through our sister organisations. “They often feel a strong attachment with the country they left behind and they want to do something for the country they or their parents were born and grew up in. “We strongly believe that our work is in the best interest of Pakistan and her people.” The US Treasury said McLintock received about $180,000 from donors in Britain between April 2011 and April 2012 and also received money from charities in the Persian Gulf and the UK. He also is suspected of smuggling cash to insurgents in Afghanistan and moving parts for improvised explosive devices between Pakistan and Afghanistan. McLintock is thought to have converted to Islam in his 20s and had become a devout Muslim since then. He settled in Bradford after fighting with the Mujahideen against the Russians in the 1980s where he lived a “spartan, modest and simple life” with his wife and children. McLintock was detained in 2009 by Pakistani authorities before being released after several days. In 2001, he was arrested in the tribal belt while crossing from Afghanistan as US forces hunted terror mastermind Osama bin Laden.Model student who took violent pathThe son of a maths teacher and achemistry lecturer, there was nothing in James McLintock’s upbringing to suggest he would be a candidate for radicalisation, writes Stefan Morkis. Growing up in Dundee, he was raised a Catholic and attended Lawside Academy. But it was while studying atEdinburgh University in the early 1980s that he embarked on the path that would see him fightingcommunists in Afghanistan and Serbs in Bosnia. Although he had been a modelstudent, in his early 20s he began obsessively reading the Bibleand effectively dropped out ofuniversity. He then read the Koran after finding a copy on a friend’s bookshelf. A year later he had converted to Islam and changed his name to YakubMcLintock. McLintock spent the next 18 months studying his new religion before, he claims, a chance encounter on a plane set him on a more violent path. He claimed he only decided to train as a fighter after speaking to SaudiArabians on a flight to Pakistan. He had been going to visit a fiend but decided to follow the Saudis to atraining camp after they said they were going to make jihad in Afghanistan. The next 40 days were spent at an Arab-run training camp and he fought in the war between the Soviet Union and Afghanistan. In 1994 he decided to take up arms again, this time against the Serbs in Bosnia. However, it was not until 2001 that he earned the nickname the ‘Tartan Taliban’. He was arrested on Christmas Eve at a checkpoint near Afghanistan’s border and held until he had been interrogated by intelligence services. McLintock was released when it was proved he had been working for acharity. However, Wikileaks documents released two years ago suggested he had links with al Qaida leader Ali Muhammad Abdul Aziz al-Fahkri and had helped to run terror training camps in Afghanistan. Then, last week, he was added to the US Treasury’s lost of “global terrorists” and has now been accused offunnelling money from the Pakistani charity he runs to terror groups.‘Tartan Taliban’ actions condemned by ministerScotland’s International Development Minister branded images of James McLintock grinning behind children he is allegedly using to draw in terror cell cash “deeply disturbing”, writes Political Editor Kieran Andrews. Humza Yousaf hit out at after The Courier obtained pictures of theDundonian in the Pakistani orphanage which is said to be a front for extremist groups. He said: “This deeply disturbingpicture shows the lengths to which extremists are willing to go in order to fund their activities. “As has recently been revealed, James McLintock has been usinginnocent children as pawns to attract financing for terror activities for some time, which is absolutely disgusting.” Conservative North East Scotland candidate Alex Johnstone joined the condemnation. He said: “Using charity as a front of funding terror is as despicable as it gets. This kind of behaviour can’t be tolerated we need to come down on people like this like a ton of bricks. “I’m glad The Courier is unmasking him in this way.” The United States and SaudiArabian governments announced a new series of sanctions on four people and two organisations tied to al Qaida, the Taliban and the Lashkar-e-Taiba extremist groups last week, including McLintock. McLintock denies the allegations and insists his organisation is alegitimate charity operator.

Dundee

NATO investigation into Dundee’s ‘Tartan Taliban’ who allegedly taught insurgents how to use deadly explosives

July 17 2017

A Muslim convert from Tayside has been accused of teaching insurgents how to use deadly improvised explosive devices (IEDs). Former Lawside Academy pupil James McLintock – known as the ‘Tartan Taliban’ - has been included in a global investigation by Action on Armed Violence (AOAV) into the “regional and transnational networks that facilitate IED use”. The newly-published report was undertaken by the London-based charity with assistance from the NATO Counter-IED Centre of Excellence which is based in Madrid. Dundee-born McLintock, 53, who changed his name to Yaqoob Mansoor Al-Rashidi, is president of the Al Rahmah Welfare Organisation (RWO), which the US Treasury alleges has been providing money for al Qaida, the Taliban, Lashkar-e-Taiba and other Afghan extremist groups under the guise of helping orphans. The report stated: “McLintock is said to have hired fighters to obtain photos and personal details of children in order to create falsified dossiers and attract funding for the Taliban under the guise of supporting orphans. “RWO has supposedly been used as a front to fund militant activities in Kunar Province, and McLintock has reportedly provided funds to Shaykh Aminullah, who runs the designated Ganj Madrasa which has been said to provide funds to the Taliban. “In 2013, McLintock met with several Taliban commanders and was actively involved in preparing madrasa students to travel and fight in Afghanistan, as well as teaching insurgents how to use IEDs. “According to the Treasury, RWO was used as a front to collect more than $180,000 from unknowing UK donors that went directly into Taliban hands. “Interestingly, RWO has currently or in the past, at least according to their website, several cooperative efforts together with organisations around the world. “These include Masjid al-Tahwid in London; Qatar Charity; the Kuwait-based International Islamic Charity Organisation; the Abu Dhabi-based Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahyan Foundation; the Saudi-based King Abdullah’s Relief Campaign for Pakistani People; the Pakistan-based Welfare and Development Org; and the Saudi-based World Assembly for Muslim Youth. “It should be noted that McLintock and RWO have ‘categorically denied’ all accusations.” Action on Armed Violence (AOAV) has a central mission to reduce harm and to rebuild lives affected by armed violence. They do this by carrying out programmatic, research and advocacy work to reduce the incidence and impact of global armed violence. One of the main pillars of AOAV work is to monitor the impact of explosive weapons around the world and investigate what causes armed violence – from guns to suicide bombings. AOAV’s global reporting on explosive violence is considered by many as the ‘main’ data set for such and is regularly quoted in both the media and at the highest levels of the United Nations. McLintock, whose mother still lives in Arbroath, was last year put on the Treasury’s “specially designated global terrorist” list, which freezes any property he has within US jurisdiction and bans Americans from doing business with him. He has previously “categorically denied” allegations made by the US Treasury that his Pakistani orphanage is providing money for extremist groups. McLintock has been not responded to attempts to reach him since he last spoke to The Courier from Pakistan last year. Raised a Catholic in Dundee As a boy growing up in Dundee, James McLintock was raised a Catholic and attended Lawside Academy. But it was while studying at Edinburgh University in the early 1980s that he embarked on the path that would see him fighting against communist Russians in Afghanistan and Serbs in 
Bosnia. However, it was not until 2001 that the former Dundee schoolboy earned himself the nickname the ‘Tartan Taliban’. He was arrested on Christmas Eve at a checkpoint near Afghanistan’s border and held until he had been interrogated by intelligence services. Eventually McLintock was released when it was proved that he had been working for a charity. However, Wikileaks documents released three years ago suggested that McLintock had links with al Qaida leader Ali Muhammad Abdul Aziz al-Fahkri.

Angus & The Mearns

Dundee-born Muslim convert included in terror dossier handed to Canadian Senate

April 6 2017

Dundee-born Muslim convert James McLintock has been included in a fresh terror dossier submitted to the Canadian Senate. The former Lawside Academy pupil’s alleged support of terrorist groups in Afghanistan and Pakistan formed part of ex-FBI counter-terrorism analyst Matthew Levitt’s testimony to the National Security and Defence Committee. A suggestion that McLintock also appeared to be involved in Syria was also included in Mr Levitt’s statement on the subject of the “terrorist abuse of charity in the age of the Islamic State and the Syria War”. McLintock, 53, who changed his name to Yaqoob Mansoor Al-Rashidi, is president of the Al Rahmah Welfare Organisation (RWO), which the US Treasury alleges has been providing money for al Qaida, the Taliban, Lashkar-e-Taiba and other Afghan extremist groups under the guise of helping orphans. McLintock was last year put on the department’s “specially designated global terrorist” list, which freezes any property he has within US jurisdiction and bans Americans from doing business with him. Mr Levitt - director of The Washington Institute’s Stein Programme on Counter-terrorism and Intelligence - said the charitable sector can be “uniquely vulnerable” to the misuse and abuse of funds by nature of the work that is carried out. He said: “Organisations funneling money to al Qaida continue to come to light as well. “Saudi Arabia and the United States jointly acted against the Al-Furqan Foundation Welfare Trust in May 2015. “In addition to supporting al Qaida, the Treasury also called out Al-Furqan for aiding the Taliban and the Pakistani jihadist group Lashkar-e-Taiba. “Less than a year later, the United States and Saudi Arabia again took joint action against four individuals and two organisations for supporting the same three terrorist groups in Afghanistan and Pakistan. “Among those sanctioned was the Scottish-born jihadist James McLintock and the Al-Rahmah Welfare Organization (RWO), of which McLintock was the president, CEO, and chairman. “According to the Treasury Department, RWO and other associated outfits received ‘large amounts of money from British donors who were not aware of the NGOs’ Taliban ties’. “Although the Treasury statement cited McLintock for supporting a variety of terrorist groups in Afghanistan and Pakistan, he also appeared to be involved in Syria.” Mr Levitt added: “Apart from the direct effects of financing terrorism, the charitable sector itself suffers more indirect effects from the abuse of charity. “The reputation of legitimate charities can take a hit when they are inflitrated by extremists and in war zones like Syria and Iraq there are the serious physical risks of having goods stolen and staff kidnapped in the countries where they are trying to help.” McLintock has “categorically denied” allegations made by the US Treasury that his Pakistani orphanage is providing money for extremist groups. The US Treasury said McLintock received about $180,000 from donors in Britain between April 2011 and April 2012 and also received money from charities in the Persian Gulf and the UK. He also is suspected of smuggling cash to insurgents in Afghanistan and moving parts for improvised explosive devices between Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Angus & The Mearns

“Tartan Taliban” man says his inclusion in cash-for-terror dossier is a “storm in a teacup”

May 11 2016

A Tayside Muslim-convert has described finding himself at the centre of a new international cash-for-terror dossier as a “storm in a teacup”. Ex-Lawside Academy pupil James McLintock, 52, who changed his name to Yaqoob Mansoor Al-Rashidi, is the president of the Al Rahmah Welfare Organisation (RWO) which the US Treasury has alleged is providing money for al-Qaida, the Taliban, Lashkar-e-Taiba and other Afghan extremist groups under the guise of helping orphans. McLintock is on the department’s “specially designated global terrorist” list which freezes any property he has within US jurisdiction and bans Americans from doing business with him. RWO and McLintock have now been included in a new report by Los Angeles financial-intelligence firm The Camstoll Group on the use of social media by blacklisted terrorism financiers and fundraisers for al-Qaida and Islamic State. McLintock - who has “categorically denied” allegations made by the US Treasury that his Pakistani orphanage is providing money for extremist groups - was named in the report alongside the likes of Hajjaj Fahd al-Ajmi; a financier of a Syrian rebel group linked to al-Qaida who maintains active social media accounts on multiple platforms, including an Instagram account with more than 1.3 million followers. McLintock told The Courier: “Are they being serious? I have 148 followers and Hajjaj 1.3m. “Why mention RWO?  A storm in a teacup. Malafide.” McLintock also accused the Camstoll Group and the US Treasury of working “hand in hand with storytelling”. He said: “ RWO is a legitimate charity. We never got a penny off social media. “The charity commission investigated in 2014 and no such problems found.” The Camstoll Group report stated: “Under the false guise of charity, James McLintock set up RWO as a front organization to finance militant activities for al-Qaida and other extremist groups from donors in the United Kingdom, the Persian Gulf, and elsewhere. “RWO and James McLintock relied on social media to support their global terrorist fundraising activities from their base in Pakistan, posting instructions for donors on how to transfer funds to bank accounts for the organization in Pakistan and the UK. “The Facebook and Twitter accounts for RWO and James McLintock remain active, soliciting donations as of early April 2016.” Camstoll’s senior management team consists of former officials from the US Treasury Department’s Office of Terrorism Financial Intelligence, together representing decades of combined experience in global illicit finance and financial intelligence. Though terrorist financiers may lose their bank accounts after being blacklisted by Treasury, “in many cases, they are still able to maintain and establish new social media accounts, often on the same social media platforms they used for their terrorist activities,” according to the report. The report details cases of alleged financiers of terrorism who hold accounts on US-based social-media platforms, including Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. “If they’re designated as financiers of terrorism, why should they be allowed to stay open on social media?” asked Matthew Epstein, Camstoll’s chief executive. Facebook said it has “zero tolerance for terrorists” and that it has a process in place to identify and suspend users who have been sanctioned. Twitter declined to comment, but in February announced it had removed more than 125,000 accounts for “threatening or promoting terrorist acts” since mid-2015. A spokeswoman for the US Treasury said: “The use of social media by terrorists, to fundraise and engage in other activities is a concern, and we employ a variety of measures to combat it.” The agency, she said, works with social-media companies to combat terrorists on the web. US authorities have the power to tell companies to delete accounts of blacklisted people or risk a fine of millions of dollars. Historically, however, Treasury hasn’t pursued such cases, experts say, because of a lack of resources, potential intelligence value of postings, and concerns about free speech. Overall, al-Qaida and Islamic State claim their social-media efforts have raised “millions” of dollars, the Camstoll report says.

Perth & Kinross

Police and fire service to carry out joint investigation into Perthshire straw blaze

October 15 2015

A major Perthshire blaze that caused thousands of pounds worth of damage and endangered drivers is under investigation by police. Huge plumes of smoke billowed across the A984 as the flames took hold of more than 150 bales of straw at Gourdie Farm. Two crews from Blairgowrie battled the fire near Murthly for more than four hours with the road closed by police due to the “likelihood of danger”. Scottish Fire and Rescue group manager Billy McLintock said the flames could have spread to a nearby tree plantation. A joint inquiries investigation to establish the cause of the fire is now underway. The incident in the early hours of yesterday morning follows another serious fire at a Bridge of Earn farm which cost around £10,000. For more on this story see The Courier or try our digital edition.

News

VIDEO: Safe-Tay’s lifesaving gift provides new tool for river rescues

April 23 2011

Firefighters in Tayside will be able to call upon new lifesaving equipment thanks to the assistance of a local water safety charity. The brigade's water specialist stations at Perth and Kingsway in Dundee have taken delivery of new cutting-edge line launchers as part of efforts to improve its water rescue capabilities. Designed to be used in river rescues and, potentially, in serious flooding incidents, the ResQmax pneumatic launchers can throw a variety of lines up to 400 feet. The new equipment has been embraced by Lisa Stuart, founder of the charity Safe-Tay, which has donated one of two launchers to Tayside Fire and Rescue. The charity works to enhance the safety and preservation of human life through the training of life guards and the support, development, improvement and promotion of water safety. It was launched in 2006 after Lisa's 20-year-old brother Graham drowned in the River Tay, and has helped to provide lifesaving equipment ever since. Tayside Fire and Rescue's training delivery co-ordinator Billy McLintock said, "The brigade continues to ensure that services are delivered by a well equipped, skilled and highly motivated workforce which is able to work safely and whose composition reflects the diverse communities we serve. "To support this we are enhancing our water rescue and flood capability by introducing the ResQmax line launcher to be located at our water specialist stations at Perth and Kingsway. "The prompt and professional response of the strategically-located water rescue resources within Tayside Fire and Rescue ensures that we respond quickly to rescues from the water and this new equipment will contribute immensely. "Tayside Fire and Rescue would like to thank Lisa and Safe-Tay for their donation and for the continued support they give to ensure the safety of our communities from the dangers of water." In recent months firefighters in Tayside have been training intensively in the use of a variety of new tools designed to help them safeguard members of the public. Since December the brigade has been training in the use of a new river rescue boat after every firefighter in Perth and Kingsway East learned basic water techniques.

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