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Torbay lifeboat diverts to emergency during severe weather exercise

Lifeboats News Release

RNLI Torbay all-weather lifeboat volunteer crew were mid-way through two rough weather exercises off Berry Head this morning (7 January) when a genuine emergency call came in.

RNLI/Vicki Bowen

RNLI Torbay all-weather lifeboat on rough water training Sunday 7 January 2018

The skipper of ocean-going trawler Holly Ann radioed for help having lost steering whilst out in the Bay and trying to make way to harbour.

The crew of all-weather relief lifeboat Volunteer Spirit with Mark Criddle at the helm immediately diverted from their rough water training exercise around a mile off Berry Head to attend the incident.

Within minutes the all-weather lifeboat arrived alongside Holly Ann, and attached a line as a precaution. The trawler still had power and was able to proceed cautiously to safe mooring in Brixham harbour escorted by the lifeboat.

Once Holly Ann was safely moored, the all-weather boat dropped off the first volunteer crew at the boathouse and boarded a second crew who then resumed rough water training out in the Bay, with sea conditions worsening to northeasterly gale force 8, gusting to 10.

Rough weather training with the volunteer crew, led by the expert Coxswains of Torbay lifeboat, is absolutely vital to ensure all crew men and women are well prepared for any shout which may come in during extreme weather and familiar with handling the Severn Class lifeboat and her equipment during such conditions.

Notes to editors

Torbay Lifeboat Station Key Facts:

RNLI media contacts

For more information please telephone Victoria Bowen, RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on 07794 043 428: or contact Carrie Garrad, RNLI Regional Media Officer on 07786 668 847: or alternatively RNLI Public Relations at Poole HQ on 01202 336 789.

RNLI/Vicki Bowen

RNLI Torbay Lifeboat approaches Holly Ann in rough seas within the Bay

RNLI/Vicki Bowen

RNLI Torbay Lifeboat with Holly Ann approaching Brixham Harbour

RNLI/Vicki Bowen

RNLI Torbay all-weather lifeboat escorts Holly Ann to safe mooring with line attached

RNLI/Vicki Bowen

RNLI Torbay relief all-weather lifeboat Volunteer Spirit returns to change crews

RNLI/Vicki Bowen

RNLI Torbay volunteer crew head out for second rough water training session 7 January 2018

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, 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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