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Girls saved from sea by Porthcawl RNLI volunteer in total darkness

Lifeboats News Release

At 10:33pm on Wednesday 23 August, both Porthcawl RNLI lifeboats Rose of the Shires and The Jean Ryall were launched to reports of two teenage girls in the sea in Coney Beach, Porthcawl.

Porthcawl RNLI volunteers and other emergency teams assisting the casualties after the rescue


Girls saved from sea by Porthcawl RNLI volunteers in total darkness

The first lifeboat on scene was the D-Class Jean Ryall, who located the first informant. He informed the crew that the two girls had entered the water about six minutes before and he could no longer see them.

Using the local knowledge of the crew, and the fact that the tide was going out, they commenced a shore line search towards Rhych Point, joined by the crew of the Atlantic 85 lifeboat who started searching towards the Eastern Promenade.

To assist the crew in searching the water in the pitch black of night, a white parachute flare was fired which illuminated the area. Shortly after this the crew of the Jean Ryall saw two persons in the water.

Chris Page, the Helm, made good speed to the persons and instructed two of the crew to jump into the water to assist the casualties. The crew assisted the girls out of the sea, to a safe area away from the water, where they were assessed by the lifeboat crews and local Coastguards.

Once the girls were assessed for any injuries, they were led up the beach to the coastguard vehicle, however one of the girls collapsed on the beach, and was given first aid by the lifeboat crew.

The Coastguard helicopter that was mobilised to help with the search landed on Coney Beach, and the two girls were airlifted to hospital.

Porthcawl RNLI Local Operations Manager, Phillip Missen, MBE, said: ‘This was a difficult rescue in almost zero visibility due to the darkness. The volunteer crew launched within five minutes of being alerted and were on scene quickly. If it was not for their commitment to the RNLI and their seamanship skills the outcome could have been very different. This rescue was a good example of joint working between the RNLI volunteers, Coastguard and Ambulance service.’

Notes to editors.

Video Available from RNLI Video Library on RNLI Web site

RNLI media contacts

For further information contact Carl Evans, Porthcawl Lifeboat Press Officer on 07919227723.

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