RNLI training boat joins the Jersey fleet

Lifeboats News Release

One of the RNLI’s training boats will join the RNLI Jersey fleet for the month of July as part of the ongoing training and development programme for the St Helier RNLI lifeboat crew.

The Robert S Ellsmore is a 42 foot Hardy cruiser, which was donated to the RNLI for the purpose of volunteer training.

She will be used to develop the all-weather lifeboat crew’s seamanship skills, with a focus on towing and navigation. A high proportion of the all-weather lifeboat services out of St Helier involve towing and this is one of the highest risk activities RNLI volunteers have to contend with. Having a second vessel allows live towing scenarios.

The addition of the training boat will let the all-weather crew further develop their skills in the various tow set-ups the RNLI adopts and reinforcement of safety, rope handling and seamanship operations. The Hardy offers a different platform to practise transferring crew from boat to boat, rig up load-sharing bridles, deal with casualty care and first aid issues and moor and berth casualty vessels at the end of the operation.

The Hardy is kitted out with two independent GPS systems and two independent radar sets, with lots of table space for chartwork, allowing four navigators to receive training at any one time. There is the additional advantage that use of the training boat does not impact the operational requirements for the all-weather lifeboat to be ready for search and rescue (SAR) tasking if she was at sea doing specific training.

The Robert S Ellsmore will be in Jersey for approximately 4 weeks to give all of the St Helier crew the opportunity to fit training in amongst their work and home life commitments.

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