Lytham Lifeboat Volunteers called out twice in four hours

Lifeboats News Release

Lytham St Annes Inshore Lifeboat brought three people to safety on Saturday 24 August.

An inshore lifeboat is seen alongside a catamaran

RNLI/Lytham St Annes

Lytham St Annes ILB alongside the catamaran

A launch request from H.M.Coastguard (Holyhead MRSC) broke into the volunteer crew’s Bank Holiday weekend on Saturday afternoon at 4.21pm. A 4.5 metre (15 foot) long sailing catamaran with two people on board, one of them thirteen years old, was becalmed as the wind faded off the mouth of the Ribble Estuary.

The Lytham St Annes Inshore Lifeboat (ILB) MOAM was launched at Seafield Road with Volunteer Helmsman Ben McGarry in command and headed down river to find the yacht in slightly hazy conditions. Finding the catamaran, a lifeboat crew member was placed on board to assist before the vessel was taken in tow back to Starr Gate from where it had been launched. The ILB then returned to Lytham to be recovered and made ready for the next time she was needed.

Crewmember Will Bridge later said, “The catamaran’s crew had no water or food with them and with one a young person being on board on a very warm day, it was essential to get the vessel back to the shore”.

Four hours later the ILB was called out again when a small motor boat with one person on board was reported to have engine failure. With darkness fast approaching, Volunteer Helmsman Tom Stuart took the ILB to sea and found the casualty. Again a line was connected and the vessel slowly towed into the Ribble and to the safety of the Lytham moorings before the lifeboat returned to her boathouse to be washed off, checked and refuelled for the second time that day before her crew could stand down.

A RNLI Spokesman said, “While both services were not what would be called dramatic, it was necessary to get both vessels and their crews back to shore before their situations deteriorated as no other help was available”.

RNLI media contacts:

David Forshaw, Lifeboat Press Officer at Lytham St Annes Lifeboat Station at david_forshaw@rnli.org.uk or Katie Lewis, Media Engagement Placement Wales and West at katie_lewis@rnli.org.uk

The bow of a catamaran is seen with an ILB towing ahead

RNLI/Lytham St Annes

The catamaran is towed to safety by the ILB
A bearded crew member in full RNLI gear

RNLI/Jason Banks

Crew member WILL BRIDGE of Lytham St Annes
A lifeboat house with a Land Rover and crew members

RNLI/David Forshaw

The Land Rover prepares to bring the ILB out of the boathouse on the 2nd service call for the day

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 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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