MOUNTAIN rescue teams and emergency services have rescued five vehicles which were having difficulties in the Moors.

At 4pm yesterday, Scarborough and Ryedale Mountain Rescue Team (SRMRT) were called by police to an elderly couple.

Their car had left the road on the north-facing slope of the Stape to Egton Bridge road at Wheeldale Gill, high in the North York Moors.

In a post on social media SRMRT said: "En route we were advised that the couple had been successfully rescued by the police - along with the occupants of two other vehicles which had also left the road in the icy conditions in the area."

Due to the number of vehicles stranded, SRMRT teams were asked to check for other stranded drivers between Stape and Egton Bridge.

"Upon arrival at Wheeldale Gill," they went on, "we successfully recovered a fourth car from a ditch along with the two occupants and their two dogs and escorted them to Pickering to continue their journey - after a short wait for a Highways Agency vehicle to self-rescue and clear itself from the road."

The occupants of the fourth car mentioned to SRMRT that they had a recovery vehicle from "a well-known national rescue company" en route to assist them.

SRMRT contacted the driver of that recovery vehicle and found that he too had become stuck on the gated road above Egton Bridge.

"To finish the evening off, we drove over the moors to recover his vehicle and see him safely on the way to his next job," they said, adding: "'So much more than mountains'. Perhaps we can truly claim to be the fourth emergency service."

Six team members and two 4x4 vehicles were deployed for just over four-and-a-half hours.