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RNLI crews watching over Ben Ainslie, Annalise Murphy and the Olympic sailors
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RNLI CE Paul Boissier said: "For our volunteer crew members who are providing safety support during the sailing races, this will be a unique and memorable experience."
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Lifeboats News Release
Author: Joanna Quinn
RNLI lifeboat crew have been providing safety and medical cover for the Olympic sailing events in Weymouth.
The competitions in the Dorset town include legendary British sailor Ben Ainslie’s attempt to win a fourth gold and rising Irish sailing star Annalise Murphy's run for her first Olympic medal.
And RNLI volunteers are watching over all the Olympic and Paralympic sailing events. The crew members, who have come from all over the UK to work in Weymouth, are operating three Atlantic 75 inshore lifeboats, with each boat carrying three crew.
Elsewhere, RNLI lifeguards will be providing safety cover for the triathlon and marathon swim events, both of which are taking place in Hyde Park, London, with the women's triathlon kicking things off this Saturday (August 4).
All official Olympic safety provision provided by the RNLI is funded by LOCOG.
Paul Boissier, RNLI Chief Executive, said: “The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is extremely proud to be involved in the 2012 Olympics. As a charity with our headquarters in Dorset, it is especially pleasing to be involved in the Olympic and Paralympic sailing events happening in Weymouth, almost on our doorstep. For our volunteer crew members who are providing safety support during the sailing races, this will be a unique and memorable experience, while the RNLI lifeboat in Weymouth will be at the heart of a iconic event that will put their home town in the spotlight.
"Similarly, the RNLI lifeguards watching over the open air swimming events on The Serpentine in London will also be playing a vital role in this once in a lifetime event. It's a great opportunity for our hardworking lifeguards and lifeboat crew to play a part in making these Olympic Games a tremendous success."
In addition to this direct involvement in the Olympic Games, the RNLI will also be providing an enhanced search and rescue service in the Weymouth area in response to the increase in maritime activity.
Both Weymouth lifeboat station’s two lifeboats will be manned 24 hours a day by crew working shifts for the duration of the Olympics, to ensure that there is no delay in response time.
Additionally, the station’s all weather lifeboat will be operating proactively within the Weymouth Bay area to ensure there is no delay in responding to any potential search and rescue incidents. RNLI Lifeguards in Weymouth are also providing extra cover during the Games period.
The RNLI was also involved in the Olympic Torch Relay. Lifeboats transported the torch at Beaumaris, Douglas and Dover while individuals connected to the RNLI carried it at various locations. Elsewhere, Kilkeel RNLI Lifeboat Safety Officer Joe Byrne will be a Field of Play Marshal on the water during the Paralympics in Weymouth.
For more information contact the RNLI Press Office on 01202 336789/ firstname.lastname@example.org
. Photographs by Phil Taylor and Colin Bewes.
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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 236 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 0845 122 6999 or by email.
The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number CHY 2678 in the Republic of Ireland