Teddington RNLI deal with two shouts in two hours on the River Thames
Teddington RNLI were tasked to two incidents on Sunday (12 January 2020) the first one at 1:25pm to someone requiring medical assistance and the second one at 2:45pm to a submerged vehicle.
As Teddington RNLI helm Tim James explained: ‘I had spent the morning out on the D class Inshore Lifeboat D-785 Peter Saw (one of two D class Inshore Lifeboats at Teddington RNLI) training with two current crew members, Nic Peters and Gianna Saccomani, and trainee Nicola Evered, in the vicinity of Teddington Lock and weir.
After the lifeboat had returned to the station and our regular boat checks carried out, a member of the public rang the Teddington RNLI Lifeboat Station concerned about a gentleman who had fallen on the tow path in Ham. As Teddington RNLI Lifeboat station is not crewed 24 hours a day, members of the public are urged to dial 999 and ask for the coastguard if they see someone in difficulty in or around the river Thames.
On this occasion however, we were able to assist immediately and launched the lifeboat within two minutes of the call. As the exact location of the casualty was not clear, we would like to thank the many members of the general public who pointed us in the right direction as we proceeded downstream to the tow path opposite Marble Hill Park. On arrival and working alongside London Ambulance Service, medical assistance was given and the casualty taken to hospital by ambulance.’
Teddington RNLI Crew member Nic Peters (who is a hydrographic surveyor when not volunteering for the RNLI) spoke with another member of the public who had also called the station directly, concerned that access for the ambulance may prove difficult.
As Nic explained, ‘Due to the exceptionally high Spring tide on the day, had the incident occurred even an hour later, the Ambulance would not have been able to get to the casualty as their access point at River Lane would have been too flooded for them to proceed. In that case, the casualty would have been evacuated by lifeboat.’
Tim James added: ‘Particular credit goes to Gianna who drove the lifeboat while Nic and I attended to the casualty. Very timely that Gianna had fully passed as Crew that very morning and been focusing on fine tuning boat handling skills just a few hours before the shout! You can’t beat putting the excellent RNLI Competence Based Training (CoBT) into action!’
Upon returning to Teddington RNLI Lifeboat Station and mid- clean, the pager sounded again at 2.45pm. The same crew launched again to assist with a submerged car at the White Cross pub in Richmond. RNLI Deputy Launch Authority Graham Jaggers, having confirmed that there were no casualties, tasked us to liaise on scene with officers from Richmond Police and the Port of London Authority.
Tim James explained: ‘As the vehicle was fully submerged, our assistance was not required and we returned to the Lifeboat Station to yet more cleaning!’
RNLI media contacts
• Paul Stallard, Teddington RNLI Lifeboat Press Officer, 07879 810 817 / firstname.lastname@example.org
• Gianna Saccomani, Teddington RNLI Deputy Lifeboat Press Officer and Crew
07798 905515 / email@example.com
David Clarke Lifeboat Press Officer Chiswick RNLI 07951 210500 David_Clarke@rnli.org.uk
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• For enquiries outside normal business hours, contact the RNLI duty press officer on 01202 336789
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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.