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Shoreham RNLI lifeboat crew rescues man after his fishing boat sinks

Lifeboats News Release

The Shoreham all weather and inshore lifeboats were launched to a report of a boat taking on water off Shoreham Harbour at 9am on Monday 12 December.

When the all weather lifeboat arrived at the scene, they found the man in the water hanging on to a lifejacket and no trace of his 18ft fishing boat, which had sunk.

The man was taken from the water aboard the lifeboat a mile and a half south east of Shoreham Harbour and back to the lifeboat station, where the crew attempted to warm him up, as he was extremely cold. Ambulance paramedics then took him to hospital where he was reported to be in a serious condition.

The inshore lifeboat continued searching the area and then returned to station.

Lifeboat coxswain Steve Smith said: 'The boat sunk so fast that the man didn’t have time to put a lifejacket on but he managed to hang onto it in the water, which helped save his life. One of the crew spotted him in the water and we got to him as soon as we could'.

RNLI media contacts

  • Michelle Tugwell, Shoreham Harbour RNLI Station Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer 0771 4080333
  • Tim Ash, RNLI Public Relations Manager (London/East/South East) on 0207 6207426, 07785 296252
  • For enquiries outside normal business hours, contact the RNLI duty press officer on 01202 336789

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