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RNLI Penarth assist in multi-agency search

Lifeboats News Release

An early start today (Monday 22 August) for volunteer RNLI crews who were paged just after 7am to help with a multi-agency search for a missing person.

Penarth RNLI's D-class lifeboat attended and conducted a search of part of the River Ely in Cardiff. 

The crews were stood down at  9am, with nothing being sighted.  A number of agencies were involved including our colleagues at Penarth Coastguard, South Wales Fire and Rescue service, South Wales Police and the Welsh Ambulance Service. 

The crew members then returned to station, prepared the lifeboat for its next shout and, for many, returned to start the working week at their varied day jobs.

The search call came less than 12 hours after Penarth RNLI lifeboat crews were paged just after 8.10pm on Sunday evening (21 August) to reports from a passing vessel of someone on Sully Island who appeared to be in distress and was waving.
The D-class lifeboat was launched to investigate.  It was confirmed that although the person was cut off by the tide, they were in fact camping on Sully Island and were not in distress, but had waved at the vessel in response to seeing their lights.  
This was a false alarm with good intent.  The camper was keen to stay on the island for a few more nights and was given safety advice.  This was the first  shout for one of our newly qualified volunteer Helms Hugh Kelsall.  Search and Rescue colleagues from HM Coastguard Penarth also attended. 

Media contacts:

For further information please contact Andy Berry, Penarth RNLI Lifeboat Press Officer, on 07951 051128 or Chris Cousens, RNLI Press Officer, Wales and West, on 07748 265496 or 01745 585162 or by email on

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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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