Puppy drowns in River Wear despite best efforts of Sunderland RNLI volunteers

Lifeboats News Release

Volunteers from Sunderland RNLI were this morning requested to launch following reports of a ‘Lurcher’ puppy being in difficulty in the River Wear close to Wearmouth Bridge.

Shortly before 08:30am this morning UK Coastguard received a ‘999’ emergency call from a member of the public reporting that their young Lurcher puppy had fallen into the River Wear close to Wearmouth Bridge.

Coastguard Officers immediately requested the launch of Sunderland RNLI’s D Class inshore lifeboats along with Officers from Sunderland Coastguard Rescue team.

With support from Coastguard Rescue Officers, lifeboat volunteers quickly located the dog and recovered it onto the lifeboat.

Travelling back to the Marina, volunteers provided emergency casualty care in an attempt to revive the puppy.

Paul Nicholson, from Sunderland RNLI said: ‘Sadly despite the best efforts of everyone involved we were unable to save the puppy from drowning. Many of our volunteers have their own dogs at home and appreciate how upsetting it will be for the dog’s family who have tragically lost a young family pet’.


Notes to editors

• Sunderland RNLI Lifeboat Station is the oldest continually operation lifeboat in the United Kingdom. It was originally opened in 1800 before being adopted by the RNLI in 1865.

• Sunderland RNLI Lifeboat Station operates its own website www.rnlisunderland.org where supporters can keep up to date with station specific activities.

• Sunderland RNLI Lifeboat Station has a profile on Twitter (SunderlandRNLI) and Facebook (RNLI Sunderland) where supporters can keep up to date with station specific activities and news.

• Sunderland RNLI Lifeboat Station operates two inshore type lifeboats: An Atlantic 85 8.3m inflatable capable of 35 knots and a D Class (IB-1) 4.5m inflatable capable of 25 knots.

RNLI media contacts

For more information please telephone:

Paul Nicholson, Sunderland RNLI Press Officer on 07957 494 077 or email - pauldnich@yahoo.co.uk or

Andy McGill, Sunderland RNLI Press Officer (Deputy) on 07980 089 622 or email - andy.mcgill83@gmail.com

As an alternative please contact RNLI Headquarters Public Relations on 01202 336000.

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.

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Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.