Looe RNLI volunteer crew launch to assist a kayaker in difficulties off Seaton

Lifeboats News Release

Looe RNLI volunteers launched the charity’s Atlantic 85 this lunchtime following a report of a kayaker in difficulties off Seaton. On arrival our crew found the kayaker had made it safely back to the beach

Looe RNLI Atlantic 85 Sheila and Dennis Tongue II leaving Looe and heading towards Seaton

RNLI/Ian Foster

Looe RNLI Atlantic 85 Sheila and Dennis Tongue II leaving Looe and heading towards Seaton

The pagers of Looe RNLI volunteers sounded for the first time this year at 11.56 am, Thursday 6 Feburary 2020, following a 999 call to Falmouth Coastguard operations centre reporting a kayaker in difficulties off Seaton. Our volunteer crew quickly launched the Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat Sheila and Dennis Tongue II with Clive Palfrey at the helm and crew, Brian Bowdler, Toby Bray and Vicky Thomas. In strong SE winds and a heavy swell the Atlantic 85 passed the Banjo Pier and our crew made their way eastwards towards Seaton. As our crew approached the location they spotted the kayaker on the beach between Seaton and Downderry. One of the crew went ashore to speak to the kayaker and confirm there were no injuries. The kayaker had been heading towards Seaton from Downderry and as the wind and swell increased fell from the craft a couple of times before deciding to make their way on to the beach.

Crew Brian Bowdler said ‘the first informant did the right thing in dialing 999 to report the incident to the coastguard’, and went on to say that the kayaker was well prepared and wearing a lifejacket.

This was the first shout for newly qualified tractor driver Eric Candy who under the watchful eye of head launcher Paul Barley, drove the Talus tractor to launch and recover the Atlantic 85. After the shout Eric said ‘he was proud to have made the first shout of 2020 and prove to himself and the team the hard work of training and assessments had been worthwhile’.


Notes to editors


· Looe RNLI Atlantic 85 Sheila and Dennis Tongue II leaving Looe and heading towards Seaton
Photo credit RNLI / Ian Foster


· Re-established as an inshore lifeboat station in 1992, Looe RNLI operate two inshore lifeboats
An Atlantic 85 Sheila and Dennis Tongue II and a D Class Ollie Naismith

· Kayaking is one of the most popular watersports in the UK
RNLI safety advice for kayakers can be found on the RNLI website

· For further information on Looe RNLI Lifeboats please visit our website www.looelifeboats.co.uk

· Looe RNLI Facebook page www.facebook.com/LooeRNLI

RNLI media contacts

For more information please telephone Ian Foster, RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer for Looe Lifeboat Station, on 07902 753228 or looelpo@ianfoster.com or ian_foster@rnli.org.uk

or Amy Caldwell, RNLI Regional Media Manager, on 07920 818807 or amy_caldwell@rnli.org.uk

or Emma Haines, RNLI Regional Media Officer, on 07786 668847 or emma.haines@rnli.org.uk

Alternatively you can contact the RNLI Duty Press Officer on 01202 336789

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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 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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