RNLI and HM Coastguard work together in dramatic rescue

Lifeboats News Release

RNLI Volunteers were paged by the HM Coastguard at 2.40pm on 8th August as a report had come in of a person on a small RIB just off of Denny Island, Portishead, with a suspected broken leg.

Casualty being taken to the helicopter by the RNLI volunteers to the awaiting Helicopter where he was transferred to hospital

RNLI/Helen Lazenby

Casualty being taken to the helicopter by the RNLI volunteers to the awaiting Helicopter where he was transferred to hospital

My Lady Anne, the Atlantic 85 class lifeboat based at Portishead, was launched along with the HM Coastguard helicopter 187 to help the casualty.
The RNLI crew arrived on scene and despite there being 3 other vessels with their anchors down creating rope hazards in the water, the RNLI were able to put a crew member on to the vessel with the casualty where he was able to assess the injured man and offer casualty care.

Chris Wade, RNLI helmsman said ‘It was a particularly challenging shout due to the rapidly ebbing tide and the number of boats with anchor lines very close by. The fractured leg was also complicated so we worked as fast as we could to recover the casualty on to our boat before we ran aground. Then liaising with the rescue helicopter 187, we agreed how best to get the casualty to hospital. It was decided our best course of action was to recover to our slipway and then transfer the casualty to the helicopter. It was a difficult job in oppressively hot conditions, but everyone worked incredibly well to bring about a good outcome. I am very proud to be part of such a great team.’

The RNLI shore crew worked quickly to move the members of the public so that they could land the helicopter as close to the lifeboat slipway as possible.

Ian Lazenby, RNLI head launcher, said ‘It is not something we have seen before. The Coastguards landed with such precision and skill it was an impressive thing to witness. Our thanks go out to the members of the public who moved very quickly in order for us to secure a landing site for the helicopter, and for staying at a safe distance ensuring the safety of our volunteers.’

RNLI notes to editors

All Images are ©RNLIPortishead

1 – Casualty being taken to the by the RNLI volunteers to the awaiting Helicopter where he was transferred to hospital

2 – HM Coastguard and RNLI support the casualty before the transfer

3 – Take off and off to hospital

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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.

A charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SCO37736). Charity number CHY 2678 in the Republic of Ireland

HM Coastguard and RNLI support the casualty before the transfer

RNLI/Helen Lazenby

HM Coastguard and RNLI support the casualty before the transfer
Take off and off to hospital

RNLI/Helen Lazenby

Take off and off to hospital

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.

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For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

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