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Sheerness RNLI lifeboat called out twice to unmanned craft adrift in the Medway

Lifeboats News Release

The volunteer crew of the Sheerness RNLI lifeboat responded to two reports of unmanned craft adrift in the shipping channels.

The first call came at 1222pm on Sunday 15 January when the crew of the all weather lifeboat George and Ivy Swanson were called by the UK Coastguard to reports of a small yacht drifting in the main shipping channel at West Oaze.

The local Pilot cutter had managed to get a line on board the vessel but due to work commitments was unable to continue and so the Sheerness lifeboat was requested to take up the tow which it did.

The yacht,which was believed to have broken from a mooring, was towed to the Lower Camber Basin in Sheerness Docks

The lifeboat returned to station at 1.30pm

The second call was on Saturday 21 January at 3.46pm when a call from the UK Coastguard reported a small dinghy had been sighted drifting near to Black Deep number 11 buoy which is situated some 19 miles from the lifeboat station.

The all weather lifeboat responded and was in the reported area approximately one hour later where a thorough search was made but nothing was found.

After further communication with the UK Coastguard it was thought that the dinghy was a derelict that had gone adrift in the high tides and had probably sunk.

The lifeboat was stood down and returned to station at 7.05pm


RNLI media contacts

Vic Booth RNLI Lifeboat Press Officer (Sheerness) 07926904453 / 01795 880544 /

• 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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