Barmouth RNLI volunteers are in training for their new all-weather lifeboat.
Excitement is mounting at Barmouth RNLI lifeboat station and activity is stepping up in preparation for the arrival of the new Shannon Class lifeboat, the Ella Larsen which will replace the current Mersey Class, the Moira Barrie, now 26 years old.
Alterations to the boathouse have been made to accommodate the new lifeboat and a detailed training plan for volunteer crew members has been drawn up.
The new Shannon Launch and Recovery System has now arrived at the station, with a relief Shannon lifeboat arriving for training purposes during the week beginning 14th January, when training starts in earnest.
This will be particularly testing for our shore crew volunteers, who will use this state-of-the-art tractor to launch and recover the relief Shannon on the beach opposite the boathouse. The new system is safer and faster than its predecessor and will enable the shore crew to get the boat and her crew safely back on shore, no matter what the weather conditions.
The Shannon is the latest class of all-weather lifeboat to join the RNLI fleet and is the first modern lifeboat to be propelled by waterjets instead of traditional propellers. So, in addition to station-based training, the crew will be required to attend jet-handling training at the RNLI Headquarters in Poole, where there will also be pre-commissioning training for mechanics.
Barmouth RNLI Coxswain Peter Davies said:
‘The arrival of our new Shannon lifeboat in March will require intensive commitment from the all-weather lifeboat and shore crew members, but all our volunteers are very excited about this news and look forward to starting their training this week.
We are indeed fortunate in Barmouth to have such a dedicated and enthusiastic crew of volunteers, of whom we can all be very proud.’
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.