Three RNLI lifeboats assist police, helicopter and coastguard teams in search

Lifeboats News Release

Last night (Monday 20 April) three volunteer lifeboat crews from Tighnabruaich, Largs and Helensburgh were paged to assist in the search for two people reported to be cut off by the tide in an unknown location.

Helensburgh Atlantic 85 lifeboat - stock image

Nicholas Leach

Helensburgh Atlantic 85 lifeboat - stock image

Local coastguard were alerted, by Police Scotland, to a report of two people cut off by a rising tide, in an unknown location, having driven themselves roughly twenty minutes from Dunoon to go for a walk.

Together with Tighnabruaich, Largs and Helensburgh RNLI lifeboats, coastguard rescue teams and rescue helicopter, police helicopter and police officers searched for the two people. Once the search was well underway, police officers located the car and then the people themselves. The casualties were brought ashore and checked by local coastguard teams before being escorted back to Dunoon by Police Scotland.

All three RNLI lifeboats were stood down and able to return to their stations where they were washed down, refuelled and made ready for their next service.

Speaking about the RNLI's response to incidents during the COVID-19 pandemic, Michael Avril, Regional Water Safety Lead for the RNLI in Scotland, said: “We have, of course, had to change the way in which we operate, to ensure our crews are as safe as possible. Volunteers and staff only attend the lifeboat station now if absolutely, operationally, necessary. However, we are still on hand 24/7 to respond when tasked by the coastguard. We are asking the public to be mindful of this and to take extra care when around the water until the lockdown measures have been lifted by the government. If our crews are paged, it means they have to break social distancing, putting themselves at risk”.

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 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and 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.

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Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.