View as PDF

RNLI Stromness Lifeboat assists two people stranded on tidal island

Lifeboats News Release

The crew of the lifeboat were paged at 9.35am to go to the Brough of Birsay to collect two people stranded by a rising tide, one of whom was blind.

The lifeboat left the harbour at 9.42am and headed out close to the Black Craig, heading north. Conditions were choppy with a F5-6 SW wind.

The lifeboat arrived at the Brough at 10.25am.

The seas from the SW were breaking heavily on the SW shore so the lifeboat approached the Brough from the North.

The conditions were evaluated and after discussion with the coastguard they were considered too dangerous for the small Y boat to bring the two people back who were in no immediate danger.

Instead two crew went through breaking surf over rocks in the Y boat to the shore and spoke with the people who were happy to remain on the Brough and wait for low water. The crew left food and water with them and returned in the Y boat to the lifeboat.

The crew headed for home at 11.10am into a lumpy SW swell at reduced speed.

The lifeboat returned to Stromness Harbour at 12.10pm and was then refuelled. 

A big thanks to the folk ashore who covered for the volunteer crew members today in their 'day jobs', allowing them to man the lifeboat.


RNLI Media Contacts: David Bowdler, volunteer lifeboat press officer at Stromness, 07871 583011.

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.

Learn more about the RNLI

For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

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