RNLI Longhope Lifeboat attends diving incident in Scapa Flow

Lifeboats News Release

First shout for volunteer crew member 17 year old Stella Kirkpatrick

RNLI/Mary Harris

Longhope lifeboat heading to Scapa Flow on service

Once again RNLI Longhope lifeboat was off to a very speedy response to the pager alert this morning at 10.12am. It was during a pre- exercise briefing that the crew were requested to launch by UK Coastguards. As they were all kitted up and ready to go, the lifeboat was underway in minutes and heading out of Longhope.

They were tasked to attend a dive boat in Scapa Flow where a diver was in difficulties. However the situation was under control and the dive boat had reached Houton pier as the lifeboat arrived. In case assistance was needed the lifeboat remained on standby until the ambulance arrived and the casualty was transferred. Sea conditions were slight and visibility good.

Once the lifeboat had been stood down by UK Coastguards the crew continued with their exercise in the Flow, going through various procedures including a man overboard recovery.

It was a particularly special exercise today for it was the first one for our recently enrolled, volunteer Crew Member, Stella Kirkpatrick aged 17 years. Stella is the daughter of our Coxswain Kevin Kirkpatrick and sister of one of our Deputy Mechanics, Jack Kirkpatrick.

Back at the station Stella said: ‘It has always been my ambition since a child to serve on the Longhope lifeboat. It was very exciting to be on my first exercise which then suddenly turned into a shout. I was really interested to see how the crew all worked together and I’m thrilled to be part of this team.’

The lifeboat was refuelled and ready again for service at 1pm.

RNLI/Mary Harris

Volunteer Crew Member, Stella Kirkpatrick's first call out, (second from right) with today's crew

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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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