Tobermory RNLI assists in multi-agency rescue of cragfast climber
Tobermory RNLI’s volunteer crew went to the aid of a cragfast climber near Glengorm on the north coast of the Isle of Mull on Tuesday 14 May 2019.
Tobermory’s volunteer crew were paged by the UK Coastguard shortly after 5.30pm and launched their Severn class all-weather lifeboat within eight minutes. The climber, who was uninjured, had become stuck on a cliff face and was unable to climb up or down. On arriving at the scene, the climber was spotted by the lifeboat crew and they were able to guide members of the Tobermory and Craignure Coastguard Rescue Teams (CRT) to the location. Stornoway Coastguard’s search and rescue helicopter, Rescue 948, was also in attendance but held off due to concerns about the risk of the helicopter’s down draught on the unsecured climber.
The lifeboat launched its daughter craft, the ‘Y boat’, and two crew members proceeded to the shore to standby whilst a Tobermory CRT rope rescue technician descended 30 metres from the cliff top to secure the climber with a rescue strop. The rescue technician and the climber then safely descended a further 40 metres to the shore where they were met by the lifeboat crew and transferred to the lifeboat.
The lifeboat returned to Tobermory where the coastguard rescue technician and climber were transferred ashore. The lifeboat was then refuelled and made ready for service by 8.45pm.
Tobermory RNLI Mechanic, Paul ‘Gunny’ Gunn said: ‘This was a great multi-agency operation and the coastguard rescue team carried out a successful rescue in a challenging location. We were pleased to be able to support them and that there was a good outcome. The climber took exactly the right action by calling for help as soon as he realised he was in difficulty and the information he gave to the coastguard meant that we were able to quickly locate him. If you see anyone in trouble at the coast or get into difficulties yourself, dial 999 and ask for the coastguard’.
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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.