British couple rescued from Amazon

After yesterday’s story on ‘grey gappers’, and the debate on who travels more, over-55s or under-35s, an elderly couple on their gap year showed that not everything always goes according to plan.

The couple were rescued from an Amazon ravine in Brazil after an emergency phone call back to the UK over 5,000 miles away.

Bruce Scott, 62, and Lesley Norris, 64, were exploring the Amazon in their motorhome when a bridge collapsed in a freak accident, sending them crashing 30ft into a gully.

The couple used their Satphone to call Ms Norris’s brother-in-law in Eastbourne, and he in turn contacted Dover Coastguards with the pairs GPS co-ordinates. The alarm was eventually raised with Brazilian authorities who came to the couple in a rescue helicopter.

Mr Scott explained: “We're just driving along the road and crossing one of the bridges and it looked like a really good bridge and it just collapsed and the vehicle went down and that's about it, we couldn't continue our journey and so the nice marines came and rescued us."

The couple, both from the UK, have been travelling around South America since January 2006 after quitting their jobs.

Elis Vulgarelli, the Marine officer who was in charge of the rescue operation, said: "Through this (satellite) phone and also their (British) rescue system they managed to give us their exact location so that our helicopter could reach them."

Fred Caygill, UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency spokesman, said: “It’s not the first time we’ve assisted people across the world.

“This is a bit unusual for us as it’s not of a maritime nature, but there are no boundaries in search and rescue.”

Quotes taken from The Telegraph.

Have you ever needed to make an emergency call home on your gap year or have you ever needed to visit a Foreign Embassy? Have you ever just been in the wrong place at the wrong time when travelling? We would love to hear your stories.