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Border Collie cross survives fall at Berry Head Quarry

Lifeboats News Release

The RNLI Torbay inshore lifeboat volunteer crew were tasked by HM Coastguard today (18 December) to attend the shoreline at Berry Head Quarry near Brixham.

Torbay Coastguard Team

RNLI volunteer crew member soothes the frightened dog

A report was received that a Collie cross dog had unfortunately gone over the cliff at the Quarry, and fallen some distance onto the rocky shoreline near the Quarry House. Sea conditions were calm, with clear but quite cold weather.

The team were paged at around 2.30pm and arrived on scene shortly afterwards, where they assisted the local Coastguard team on the cliffside in reaching the female dog on the shore. She was retrieved safely by the volunteer crew and passed to the Coastguards using the special ‘dog bag’ and returned to her very relieved owners at the top of the cliff.

Thankfully, the black and white Collie/Whippet cross appeared to be shaken but unharmed, and was taken to a local vet by her owners to be checked over. The inshore lifeboat crew returned to station and the lifeboat was ready for service again at around 3.10pm.

This was a Christmas-time story with a happy ending, but please be careful when walking your dogs near the coast and cliffs over the festive period, as it is less unusual than you may think for an excited or distracted dog to go over the cliff. RNLI advice is to always keep dogs on a lead near the edge, and if the worst happens owners should not attempt a rescue by scaling cliffs or going into the water, but should call the Coastguard for assistance.

Further advice from the RNLI for dog-walkers can be found here:

Torbay Coastguard Team

RNLI Torbay inshore lifeboat arrives at the foot of the cliff as Torbay Coastguard colleagues look on

Torbay Coastguard Team

The frightened Collie cross on the rocky shoreline after falling at Berry Head Quarry

Torbay Coastguard Team

RNLI volunteer crew members pass the dog up to Coastguard colleagues in the 'dog bag'

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