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Blackpool RNLI volunteers are called out to tragedy at midnight on New Years Eve

About the author

Image of Esther Lowe

Esther Lowe
Lifeboat Press Officer at Blackpool.

Start quoteThe sea conditions were extreme and the search was difficult and dangerous.End quote

Lifeboats News Release

  • Date:
  • Author: Esther Lowe

Blackpool’s RNLI volunteers were called out shortly after midnight on 01 January 2013 to reports of a man in the water at South Pier, Blackpool. The man had entered the water at high tide in very rough conditions and had got into difficulties.

​Tragically, despite an extensive search by the RNLI and other emergency services the man could not be found.

Shortly after midnight the man had entered the water but quickly got into difficulties in the treacherous sea conditions.  Another man tried to assist him but was forced back to the shore where he raised the alarm.  At 00:13am Blackpool and Lytham RNLI lifeboat crews were paged.  Conditions on scene were extremely rough and were exacerbated by the high tide and as a result Blackpool’s inshore lifeboats could not be launched immediately.  However, Lytham’s RNLI all weather lifeboat, the police helicopter and the RAF search and rescue helicopter began a search and Blackpool’s RNLI volunteers prepared to launch at the earliest opportunity.

Shortly after high water the sea conditions allowed two of Blackpool’s RNLI inshore lifeboat’s to launch.  The sea conditions were extreme and the search was difficult and dangerous.  Unfortunately despite the extensive combined efforts of the RNLI, Coastguard, police and RAF the man could not be found and the Coastguard took the decision at 03:30am to stand down the search teams.  However, coastguard rescue teams have continued the search of the beach and shoreline this morning.

Blackpool RNLI spokesman Paul Parton said ‘tonight’s search was a long and difficult one and sadly we were unable to find the casualty.’

RNLI media contacts
For more information please contact Esther Lowe Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer, RNLI Blackpool. Home 01253 508603, mobile 07917091948, lifeboat station 01253 620424 or email robbyn89@yahoo.com  Alternatively please contact Alison Levett, RNLI Media Relations Manager, North, on 01642 750585 or 07786 668912.

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Key facts about the RNLI

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. Our volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland from 237 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 180 beaches around the UK and operates a specialist flood rescue team, which can respond anywhere across the UK and Ireland when inland flooding puts lives at risk.

The RNLI relies on public donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. As a charity it is separate from, but works alongside, government-controlled and funded coastguard services. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 our lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved at least 140,000 lives. Volunteers make up 95% of the charity, including 4,600 volunteer lifeboat crew members and 3,000 volunteer shore crew. Additionally, tens of thousands of other dedicated volunteers raise funds and awareness, give safety advice, and help in our museums, shops and offices.

Learn more about the RNLI

For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 or by email.


The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number 20003326 in the Republic of Ireland