On a gloriously sunny day and in the stunning environment of Ghar Lapsi, a team from Banif got together to challenge their comfort zones, face their fears and abseil down the sides of Wied ix-Xaqqa. In an initiative organised by the Banif Sports and Social Committee (BSSC), the Banif team donned safety hats and strapped themselves tight for the steep descent, under the professional guidance of the Emergency Fire and Rescue Unit (EFRU). The valley, in the limits of Siggiewi, is a Natura 2000 site protected for its geology and because it is an important habitat to bird species. The coastal cliffs are mostly characterised by coralline limestone and the views from the top are spectacular. Wied ix-Xaqqa is a popular spot for rock climbers and abseilers, with valley walls over 100m high in places.
“Abseiling down Wied ix-Xaqqa wasn’t for the fainthearted!” said BSSC President Ian Sammut Dacoutros. “But all those who went for it enjoyed every minute of the descent. The Banif team is a young and enthusiastic one, and the BSSC initiatives reflect this. Sports and social activities are organised on a regular basis to foster team building and to get together for fun events. This particular event was truly a bucket-list experience!”
The EFRU is a non-profit voluntary organisation, primarily set up to provide emergency rescue services as a backup to the constituted authorities in case of national catastrophes such as earthquakes, floods and major disasters. Specialising in advanced rescue including cliff rescue, high angle rescue, fire fighting, diving rescue and first aid among others, the unit is also equipped to offer its services to commercial and other charitable organisations who may, from time to time, request its assistance be it on land or sea.