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11 Apr, 2018 11:07

Suicide cult or heavy metal fans? Police launch huge rescue op for nothing

Suicide cult or heavy metal fans? Police launch huge rescue op for nothing

A group of heavy metal campers sparked a mass police search and rescue operation in Scotland when a passer-by mistook them for a suicide cult.

The campers, who included three adults and three young children, had sailed off to the 14th century Loch Leven Castle to enjoy a starlit night in the ruins. A passer-by spotted them and alerted the police to their presence, fearing they might attempt suicide, iNews reports.

A mass rescue operation kicked off, reportedly involving up to 70 people and including boats, helicopters and fire crews. The police even smashed into the group’s car in a bid to find a suicide note.

Campers David Henderson, a modern languages teacher from Glasgow, Aberdeen University lecturer Panadiotis Filis and civil engineer Ross Anderson all share a passion for heavy metal music. Henderson, who is also a singer with black metal band Nyctopia, described how the group often go on such adventures and said: “We do a lot of camping in rural parts of Scotland, at ruins and that kind of thing.

“We have a small boat and we thought it would be good to take it out to the island and set up camp for the night,” he said, according to iNews. “We’ve got a large tee-pee and we had a campfire going. It was a nice evening and one of the kids had already gone off to sleep. Then all of a sudden, it was like something from the X-Files.”

Filis expressed dismay at the fact that the group’s leisure activity prompted such a wave of panic. “It was a lovely evening, the only thing that wasn’t so nice was that someone must have thought we needed rescuing.

"The next thing we knew, there was all these blue flashing lights on the shore. We had no idea what was going on.” Filis added: “There must have been about 50 to 70 people there, all coming to rescue us, even though we didn’t need rescuing.

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“I think someone was worried that we had left our car parked at the edge of the water. They must have thought it was abandoned. The police smashed the window to get inside and they told us later they were looking for a suicide note.”

A Police Scotland spokeswoman said: “There was concern for people, who were traced safe and well later.”

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