Quick thinking by the crew of Bembridge's ILB rescues three people
'RNLB Norman Harvey' (Inshore Lifeboat D-778) was launched at around 5:30pm last Saturday to provide a safety presence during this year's 'St Helens Fort Walk' on the Isle of Wight.
Towards the end of the 'walk' (an annual 'happening') with the vast majority of the estimated (by the Bembridge Coastguard Team) 4,500 people safely back on the beach, the crew of the
Norman Harvey spotted a father and his two teenage sons in considerable difficulty after they had unexpectedly fallen into a deep hole in the middle of the channel whilst they were crossing from the St Helens side to the Bembridge side.
The crew were able to reach the three casualties very quickly and were able to keep them afloat whilst they recovered them on board the Norman Harvey. Having checked them over, they then made their way towards the inner harbour entrance and handed the three casualties over to the local Coastguard team who had been keeping an eye on the 'walk'. As the three had all swallowed copious amounts of sea water, an ambulance was requested so that they could be taken to St Mary's Hospital to be checked over.
The Norman Harvey then returned to Lane End and was recovered by 8.45pm.
Once back at the Station, a crew member said 'we saw them get into difficulty just in time and I am in no doubt that by our quick action we saved at least one life; a very satisfying end to a busy day'.
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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.