Two kayakers rescued by Porthcawl RNLI Lifeboat
Two kayakers had to be rescued quickly by RNLI volunteer crew as one of the male casualties, who was in the sea, was being swept down the Bristol Channel by the fast flowing tide.
The two had paddled out to the Fairy Buoy which is about three quarters of a mile off Porthcawl Breakwater and decided to climb onto the buoy to take some photographs. However their kayak was swept away by the ebbing tide. One of the casualties decided to swim to try to retrieve the kayak but quickly found that the tide was so strong that he too was being swept down the channel. Fearing for the safety of his colleague in the sea, who he was starting to lose sight of, the casualty still on the buoy used his mobile phone to alert the Coastguard Agency.
Porthcawl’s Atlantic 85, Rose of the Shires, was launched at 17:19 on Monday evening and rescued the first casualty from the buoy who then guided the crew in the direction of his colleague. The second casualty was lifted from the sea approximately a quarter of a mile down channel.
Fortunately both were returned ashore and did not require any medical assistance.
Deputy Launch Authority, Ross Martin, said: ‘The two casualties were very lucky not to have come to harm today as the second casualty had considered entering the water to assist in retrieving the kayak. What some sea users are not aware of is that we have the second highest rise and fall of tide in the world here and with the tide flowing at approximately six knots out in the channel even the best of swimmers will be swept away.
‘We must also stress the need, even when it is hot and the sea is calm, that lifejackets and other safety equipment be used. The casualties’ difficulties had been observed by RNLI Lifeguards at Sandy Bay and the National Coastwatch Institution’s team who both alerted the UK Coastguard Agency of the danger the kayakers were in.’
For further information contact
Ian Stroud, Lifeboat Press Officer, Porthcawl. Mob 07590777875
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.