A lost speedboat, and a medical evacuation, keep Rhyl RNLI lifeboats busy
The volunteer crew members of Rhyl's lifeboats had two callouts in twelve hours between Tuesday 18 July and Wednesday 19 July.
The crew had only just left the station after a quite rigorous physical training evening when, at 9pm on Tuesday, they were paged to initially search for a 21-foot speedboat with two people on board, who had machinery failure somewhere by the Rhyl Flats wind farm, and thought they were somewhere between Llandudno and Abergele. The vessel had set out from Rhyl the previous afternoon, so were heading back towards there. The all-weather Rhyl lifeboat launched and proceeded to the westerly side of the wind farm, and tried to contact the casualty by radio, but was not very successful. As the lifeboat approached Colwyn Bay, the UK coastguard at Holyhead suggested that it may be prudent to launch Llandudno lifeboat to help search. About ten minutes later, Rhyl lifeboat managed to contact the casualty, and minutes later, spotted them off Rhos-on-sea. Llandudno lifeboat was stood down, as Rhyl was close by. The lifeboat was alongside within five minutes. A towline was attached and the vessel was towed back to Rhyl.
As there was no water in the harbour to recover the boat, the Inshore lifeboat was launched to take the owner back to shore, so he could bring their trailer to the lifeboat station. The boat was successfully recovered at the station and the lifeboats got back at about 20 minutes past midnight.
As the crew were cleaning the equipment after the previous night, UK coastguard set the pagers off again for the all-weather lifeboat. A fisherman on one of the charter fishing vessels from Rhyl had got a hook embedded in his hand, and was quite poorly, so a medical evacuation was requested. The lifeboat launched and proceeded to the boat, which was heading towards Rhyl, so they met about five miles out. A casualty care team of lifeboat crew members boarded the vessel, and assisted the casualty who was still unwell. The fisherman was given first aid and put in to a stretcher, and transferred to the lifeboat. The crew monitored the casualty's health on the trip back, and the lifeboat returned to Rhyl beach to be met by paramedics, so that care could be handed over to them on the trip up the beach. The casualty was transferred to hospital by ambulance whilst the crew continued their efforts to clean the equipment from the previous night.
Paul Frost, acting duty Coxswain says ' As a charity, it is our volunteers who keep everything ticking over. Their training came to the fore in the last day, and I personally thank them for their great teamwork' .
The attached pictures show the tracks of Rhyl lifeboat for each "shout", and also some screen grabs taken from the crew's helmet cameras.
Videos will be available later when all permissions are in place.
Key facts about the RNLI
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, in a normal year, 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.