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Sheerness RNLI lifeboat aids wind farm transfer craft

Lifeboats News Release

The Sheerness all weather lifeboat responded after a wind farm support vessel was reportedly taking on water.

RNLI Whitstable

The badly listing 'Tempest' with the Sheerness RNLI lfeboat 'George and Ivy Swanson' standing by.

The volunteer crew of the Sheerness RNLI all weather lifeboat ‘George and Ivy Swanson’ were called by the UK Coastguard at 9.51am on Thursday 30 March to reports that the 21mtr. Wind farm Transfer Craft ‘Tempest’ with two crew members and four turbine technicians on board had struck an underwater object and was taking on water close to the wind farm complex off Whitstable.

The all weather lifeboat launched at 10.05am and proceeded at best speed to the location, arriving on the scene at 10.40am where they met the Whitstable RNLI lifeboat and another wind farm vessel who were already there.

Two crew members from the Sheerness lifeboat were put on board the casualty with a salvage pump and along with another pump from the Whitstable lifeboat began to pump water from the ‘Tempest’.

The craft was stuck fast on the unknown underwater object and with both lifeboats standing by the crews waited to see if it would come free once water had been pumped out, which it eventually did.

Once free it did not appear that the water ingress was getting any worse and so with the damaged compartment sealed the skipper got the craft underway, albeit listing quite badly, and at slow speed made for Whitstable with both lifeboats escorting it.

Steady progress was made and Tempest was secured alongside the quay in Whitstable Harbour at 1.10pm

The Sheerness lifeboat was released and was back on station and ready for service again at 2.30pm.


Media contacts:

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

RNLI Sheerness lifeboat

'Tempest' stuck hard aground with salvage pumps working hard

RNLI Sheerness lifeboat

Making slow progress back to Whitstable

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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.

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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