There are currently six classes of all-weather lifeboat in the RNLI fleet: Shannon; Tamar; Severn; Trent; Tyne; and Mersey.
The Tyne class was the first 'fast' slipway lifeboat. Introduced in 1982, she can also lie afloat.
First introduced at Selsey Lifeboat Station in 1982, the Tyne’s features include a low-profile wheelhouse and a separate cabin behind the upper steering position. She is self-righting, aided by twin automatically inflating bags on the aft cabin roof. Her mast and aerials can be lowered when working with helicopters and to fit into a boathouse.
The propellers and rudders lie in partial tunnels set into the hull, which, along with the main and two long bilge keels, provide excellent protection for the unforgiving low waters and shallow channels in and around the harbour.
The Tyne carries an X boat, a small unpowered and manually launched inflatable daughter boat, to access areas where the lifeboat cannot reach.
The comprehensive electronics include VHF and MF radios with DSC functionality, VHF direction finder, DGPS with electronic chart system and radar.
Comprehensive first aid equipment includes stretchers, oxygen and Entonox. Other equipment carried includes a portable salvage pump.
The last Tyne was built in 1990 and the class will be gradually replaced by the Tamar class.
Slipway or afloat
Number in fleet:
16 at station plus 8 in relief fleet
240 nautical miles
Hull – corten steel
Superstructure – aluminium
2 x GM6V92 marine diesel; 425hp each at 2,300rpm or 2 x GM6V92 DDec; 525hp each at 2,300rpm
Self-righting - 37
Non self-righting - 108
Calshot RNLI all-weather lifeboat crew were called upon three times in one day to attend to injured yachtsmen during Cowes Week in 2011. In the first incident a crewman aboard a J80 class yacht suffered a serious head injury in an accident. He was treated aboard the boat by Calshot lifeboat’s doctor and a doctor aboard the yacht. He was then transferred to the Gosport and Fareham independent inshore rescue boat (pictured below) and airlifted to Southampton General Hospital.
The second incident involved a man who had fallen overboard from a 12m Beneteau yacht. He had been rescued by the yacht crew but had swallowed a lot of seawater. A lifeboat crew member from Calshot gave casualty care before the man was taken to Cowes to be met by an ambulance and rushed to St Mary’s Hospital in Newport.
In a further incident, the doctor from Calshot lifeboat helped to treat a French sailor at Cowes who had received a head injury. He was also taken to St Mary’s Hospital.
During the evening of Poole Lifeboat Station’s Annual Presentation of Awards Dinner, Coxswain Jonathan Clark, who works for Sunseeker, got a phone call at 11.15pm on 6 May to say that a 34m Sunseeker, worth approximately £7M, was on fire at New Quay, Poole Quay.
He went across to New Quay to check and requested the launch of the station’s all-weather Tyne class lifeboat City of Sheffield with six crew including himself. The inshore lifeboat followed soon after. All crew turned up suitably attired in shirts and ties.
Two all-weather lifeboat crew were put ashore with a salvage pump to boundary cool with the fire hose. After 10 minutes, flares from the back of the vessel ignited and the fire crew said: 'Thanks for your help, nice tie, but we suggest you get back now!'
A second Sunseeker, a 115 Predator, was towed off the quay by the Tyne class with two inshore lifeboat crew members onboard, and this was then tied alongside further up the quay.
After this, several fire pumps fought the fire for a further 2½ hours until the fire was under control.
Locations of Tyne class lifeboat stations:
Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI), a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Registered charity number 20003326 in the Republic of Ireland | RNLI (Trading) Ltd - 1073377, RNLI (Sales) Ltd - 2202240, RNLI (Enterprises) Ltd - 1784500 and RNLI College Ltd - 7705470 are all companies registered in England and Wales at West Quay Road, Poole, BH15 1HZ. Images and copyright © RNLI 2015.