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Summer Solstice call for leads to long day for Penarth and Barry Dock RNLI crews

Lifeboats News Release

Crews from two lifeboat stations were called in the early hours of the longest day of the year today (Wednesday 21 June) to assist a small power boat which had lost power.

RNLI/Andy Berry

Penarth Crew, after shout, at summer solstice

The UK Coastguard requested Barry Dock RNLI volunteers to launch 1.30am to the vessel, which was drifting 10 miles south of Barry.

Once on scene the Barry Dock volunteer crew found the husband and wife crew were suffering sea sickness and the boat was rolling quite heavily despite the relatively calm conditions.

A tow line was attached and the vessel was brought towards Cardiff Bay barrage.

Penarth RNLI crews were called just after 3am to assist Barry Dock and the D class lifeboat was launched with a crew of three. They took over the tow at around 3.30am and escorted the vessel into the safety of Cardiff Bay.

Ben Phillips, of Barry Dock RNLI, said: Our crew were eventually back on station at 4.30am. They then had a short amount of time to have a debrief and a cup of tea before heading out to work for the day, including two who were starting their shifts as paramedics at 6am.

'It might be the longest day of the year, but it was an even longer one for our crew who started their day at 1.30am in the morning.'

Andy Berry, of Penarth RNLI, said: 'As crews were washing down the D class lifeboat and refuelling, the crews were treated to a spectacular summer solstice sunrise. For many of our crew members, returning to bed was not an option as their day jobs were calling; for many of us it is going to be the longest day.'

Notes to editors:

The attached pictures show the Summer Solstice sunrise as Penarth RNLI crews returned to station in the early hours of this morning.

For more information please contact Andy Berry, Penarth RNLI Lifeboat Press Officer, on 07951051128, Ben Phillips, of Barry Dock RNLI, on 07712 8166756 or Chris Cousens, RNLI Press Officer, Wales and West, on 07748 265496 or 01745 585162 or by email on

RNLI/Andy Berry

RNLI/Phil Lay

Crew members awaiting return of lifeboat

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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.

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