Withernsea RNLI search in the dark for person in water in multi-agency operation

Lifeboats News Release

On Tuesday 3 January the volunteer crew at Withernsea were paged at 9:31pm by the UK Coastguard to search for a person that had been seen walking into a rough sea.

Withernsea RNLI search for person reported in water

Andy Medcalf

Withernsea RNLI search for person reported in water

D-Class lifeboat Henley Eight was launched at 9:41pm with three crew on board, into challenging conditions. Along with the lifeboat, Coastguard rescue helicopter 912 was also asked to assist with the search, with the local Coastguard Rescue Team also in attendance who searched the shoreline with the remaining Withernsea lifeboat crew.

After searching for 45 minutes in heavy surf and poor conditions, the Withernsea RNLI volunteer crew were stood down when the casualty was found safe at a nearby address.

Volunteer Helmsman Tim Beckett said: ‘We’re all very relieved the person we were looking for was found safe and well after going into the sea. Conditions were so poor we needed to fire two flares to light up the sky so we could launch safely, we had to rely on all our training to get the boat safely to sea and conduct the search as best we could in horrible conditions.’

Launch Authority Rob Dawson added: ‘We train twice a week for every possible scenario, and tonight showed that all that hard work and dedication our volunteers have put in has paid off. It took a big team effort to get the boat to sea in bad conditions and get it home safely.’

RNLI Picture caption

The photo shows the lifeboat being recovered after last night’s launch. Courtesy of Andy Medcalf.

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The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.

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