The Arancia inshore rescue boat’s first mission at Criccieth, on 15 September 2009. showed the ability of the Arancia in shallow waters. The volunteer RNLI crew were called to two adults who required assistance on the salt marshes close to Portmeirion.
The Atlantic 85 also launched and both boats arrived on scene at the same time, although the Arancia was towed to Borth y Gest by Land Rover to launch. Also tasked were the local coastguard teams and the SAR helicopter from RAF Valley.
The extensive search by both RNLI lifeboats, the Coastguard and the RAF resulted in the Coastguard finding the two adults near Boston Lodge, where they were escorted to safety.
Missing people found after 2-hour search
On 20 July 2011, both Criccieth’s Atlantic 85 and inshore rescue boat launched to search for a missing personal watercraft with two people onboard near Black Rock Beach.
En route, the crew came across an inflatable toy whale, which they rescued, and as there was no sign of anyone missing from the whale they continued their search.
The Atlantic 85 crew then found the missing craft, whose engine was still warm, although the kill cord was in the locker and not attached to the engine, and there was no one onboard.
The inshore rescue boat started to search the estuary from Borth y Gest to the Porthmadog Bar, and then along the coastal area to Harlech, while the Atlantic started an expanding box search. At the same time, an RAF helicopter from Valley was scrambled to help search.
After a lengthy search, the helicopter found the two people. They had been in the water for over 2 hours and were very cold, but conscious. They were airlifted to Bangor Hospital and both Criccieth’s boats returned to station.