Warm praise for Cowes Lifeboat Station’s response to many call-outs

Lifeboats News Release

The unusually high number of call-outs involving Cowes RNLI lifeboat over an 11-day period brought praise for the station’s all-volunteer members from their Lifeboat Operations Manager, Mark Southwell.

One of the last ‘shouts’ involved a sinking 33 foot motorboat in Wootton Creek, attended by the lifeboat just after 3 am on Sunday, 18 June.

RNLI/George Chastney

One of the last ‘shouts’ involved a sinking 33 foot motorboat in Wootton Creek, attended by the lifeboat just after 3 am on Sunday, 18 June.

From Thursday 8th June to Sunday 18th June there were no fewer than nine ‘shouts’, with each one attracting sufficient lifeboat crew, shore-crew and a launch authority member to fully respond to the perceived emergency.

“The consistency throughout was quite outstanding, considering our volunteers also have a life outside of the RNLI including family and work commitments,” said Mark. “Although, fortunately, not one of the call-outs involved an injury or a fatality, there were several where the outcome could have been very different without our attendance.”

The ‘shouts’ included a yacht aground on the Bramble Bank, several men in difficulty in the River Medina, engine failure involving yachts, a RIB, and a fishing boat, a capsized windsurfer, a sinking motorboat in Wootton Creek, and a drifting unattended RIB. And several of the call-outs were late at night or in the early hours of the morning.

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 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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