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West Kirby RNLI takes part in multi-agency search

Lifeboats News Release

A two hour major search over the Dee estuary was undertaken yesterday afternoon (Tuesday 19 April) involving RNLI volunteers, HM Coastguards and the Police.

The West Kirby Lifeboat was launched shortly after 2.00pm to search the area from Thurstaston to Hilbre Island and beyond for a person reported to be in difficulty in the sea.

HMCG was alerted by a person playing Golf at Calday Golf Club who reported a person in difficulty attempting to get into a small boat some distance off the beach opposite the Golf Course.

The West Kirby RNLI volunteers made haste over the beach from West Kirby to Thurstaston and launched the charity’s lifeboat in the last of the ebbing tide near Dee Sailing Club, whilst an RNLI lifeboat crew member searched the beach from the waterline towards the shore.

Once launched, the RNLI lifeboat searched the area on the Wirral coast and later towards the Welsh coast and further north as the remains of the tide were ebbing at a fast rate and there was a considerable risk of the person who was reported to be in difficulty being washed out to sea.

The RNLI volunteers were assisted by HM Coastguard shore personnel and two helicopters, one from HM Coastguard at Caernarvon and the local Police helicopter.

Following a protracted search of the area for over two hours in favourable conditions which helped the rescue personnel, all were stood down and the helicopters returned to their respective bases in Wales.

As the tide was approaching low water the lifeboat was recovered some distance off to the West of the Hilbre Islands and returned to the West Kirby Lifeboat Station to be washed down and prepared for the next service.

RNLI Photo caption
West Kirby RNLI in action. Credit: Sam Hanson.

RNLI Media contacts
For more information, please contact Ed Rowland, RNLI Volunteer Press Officer at West Kirby, on 07429277294.

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 Ireland from 238 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen, Carrybridge and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 240 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.

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