Kilkeel RNLI launch following reports of lone sailor in difficulty
At 1.20 pm today (24 July) Kilkeel RNLI volunteer crew launched with Raymond Newell as helm to go to the aid of a lone sailor on a yacht which had been reported by a concerned passer-by as being in difficulty just off the mouth of Kilkeel harbour.
In good conditions, the volunteer crew arrived quickly on the scene and speaking to the solo yachtsman the crew were informed that he wasn't in difficulty. After checking he had safety gear, they wished him well and the lifeboat Frank William Walton returned to the boathouse and was made ready for the next call. Kilkeel Coastguard were in attendance.
Kilkeel RNLI crewmember Neal Forsythe said, 'It's always best if you think someone is having difficulty at sea to call the Coastguard, to not call shouldn't be an option.'
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.