St Ives RNLI launch to two kayakers caught out by the swell
The pagers sounded at 10.41am and the volunteer lifeboat crew sprang into action. Reports had come in of two persons with their kayaks needing help, with one person in the water.
At the same time, Falmouth Coastguard tasked the RNLI lifeguards on patrol on Porthmeor beach who launched their Rescue Water Craft (RWC). There appeared to be just one kayaker in difficulty after capsizing her kayak and calling for help. The NCI St. Ives is situated on top of the island overlooking the whole of St. Ives Bay, and was able to assist with communication and observations as it was directly beneath their station.
Senior Lifeguard, Luke Austin, launched the RWC where lifeguards Jonno Waugh and Reef Slack attended the incident immediately. When they arrived at the scene, another kayaker was with the lady who had capsized and they were both slowly drifting out to sea with the ebbing tide
Porthmeor lifeguards reassured the casualties and assisted them onto the RWC sled, while requesting assistance from St Ives RNLI
Volunteer helm George Deacon launched the Inshore lifeboat with volunteer crew Neil Brooks and Sue Antcliff.
The crew quickly made their way to North East back of St Ives head. The lifeboat crew and lifeguards worked together to quickly get both potential casualties onto the inshore lifeboat along with their kayaks. Once aboard the inshore lifeboat, the crew then were able to bring them back to St Ives harbour and to the station.
Helm George Deacon said 'People can easily get caught out in a swell, but I was pleased to see that both persons had followed safety protocols with lifejackets and a way to call for help. This meant we could respond quickly in order to assist them.’
Lifeguard Supervisor, Lloyd Davies, said, ‘It was great to see both teams working together, especially on home turf. This was something we’ve highlighted as an area of potential risk and now we have had the opportunity to put our training into a real situation. The excellent communications between the lifeguards, lifeboat, Coastguard and the NCI were a credit to our service’.
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.