Clacton RNLI’s volunteers called out seven times in a week
In the space of seven days the lifeboats and volunteers of Clacton RNLI have been tasked seven times to assist in a range of incidents, producing their busiest period for several years.
The volunteer crew of Clacton RNLI have had their busiest period in several years after responding to seven requests for assistance by UK Coastguard in seven days. This period of intense activity started just after 8pm on May 11, with the request to assist Essex Police and Clacton Coastguard’s mobile unit with a person in difficulty in the sea and ended at 4pm on Saturday May 18 after assisting a jet ski back to shore off Martello beach.
The volunteer crew of the D class inshore lifeboat Arthur Hamilton plucked a casualty from the sea on the evening of May 11 and returned to the boathouse with the casualty so they could be attended to by paramedics of the East of England Ambulance Service. The following morning during a routine training session, both of Clacton RNLI’s lifeboats were diverted to assist with a jet ski that had run aground in the River Colne.
Tuesday 14 May saw the Arthur Hamilton launch at 10.30pm to assist in a multi-agency search alongsideWest Mersea RNLI, and Clacton Coastguard after flares had been reported. Nothing was found, and all units stood down, with the Arthur Hamilton returning to station at 00.35am the following day. Believed to be a false alarm with good intent as thought to have originated from the MOD firing range.
Wednesday evening at about 6pm saw the Arthur Hamilton inshore lifeboat launch once again, this time to reports of a kite surfer in difficulty. The crew escorted the novice kite surfer back to shore and offered some safety advice before returning to station in preparation for a weekly training session.
Saturday 18 May started with a request by UK Coastguard to assist their mobile units with an ongoing operation. Nothing untoward was discovered and the RLNI volunteers were stood down. At 3.15pm this busy period came to an end after checking on and towing back to shore a jet ski and its rider that had been reported to be in difficulty by Clacton’s Beach Patrol.
Dave Wells, Lifeboat Operations Manager at RNLI Clacton, said; ‘This has been an exceptionally busy period for us at Clacton RNLI, which has made me proud of the dedication and professionalism of the team we have.’ Mr Wells went on to say; ‘Such a sustained period of call outs takes its toll on the volunteer’s home and work lives, which would be impossible without the support of their families and employers who allow the crew members to drop everything and disappear when the pager sounds, for this we are truly grateful.’
Notes to editor
D class inshore lifeboat Arthur Hamilton from the relief fleet is currently on station as Damarkand IV has been withdrawn from service.
RNLI media contacts
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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.