Busy week for Burnham-on-Crouch RNLI volunteer crew

Lifeboats News Release

A tasking by HM Coastguard late on Saturday night (4 July), brought the number of shouts for Burnham-on-Crouch RNLI to four within a week.


Assessment of the grounded casualty

The first of the shouts occurred on Saturday 27 June, when Burnham-on-Crouch RNLI volunteer crew were tasked at 4.08pm by HM Coastguard to recover and secure a small boat seen drifting in the River Roach with no one seen on board.

The Atlantic class lifeboat Tony and Robert Britt was immediately launched and located the casualty within minutes drifting in the mouth of the River Roach.

The volunteer crew received word that the casualty vessel had been seen earlier in the day with a lone male on board. An RNLI crew member boarded the vessel and discovered personal belongings on board whereupon the shout was changed to search and rescue with Burnham-on-Crouch RNLI’s D class lifeboat being launched at 6.12pm to join the search.

Both lifeboats were later joined by the Coastguard search and rescue helicopter and an extensive search of the river was underway.

Documentation found on board gave details of the boat owner. A call was made to ensure the owner was safe and well, unfortunately the documents belonged to the previous boat owner but with his assistance the current owner was traced and found to be safe totally unaware of the events happening around his boat.

Once it was established the owner was safe, the volunteer crew from Burnham-on Crouch RNLI secured his boat and were stood down and returned to station where they arrived at approximately 7.45pm.

The pagers of the volunteer crew rang out again at 8.13am the next day when they were tasked to respond to a Mayday calls from a lone rower that had run aground in the Holliwell Point area of the River Crouch and was stuck firmly in the mud.

The Atlantic class lifeboat Tony and Robert Britt was launched and the casualty located.

Following a close assessment, it was established that neither the rower or his boat were in danger so after ensuring that there was sufficient provisions on board it was decided to leave the casualty in situ with the same volunteer crew from Burnham-on-Crouch RNLI returning later that afternoon to re-float the casualty at high tide.

A third shout came on Friday 3 July with the volunteer crew tasked to at 7.38pm to respond to a report of a 35’ motor cruiser entangled on moorings on the River Crouch opposite Essex Marina with a number of people onboard. Dover Coastguard additionally called upon the assistance of HM Coastguard Southend.

Burnham-on-Crouch RNLI volunteer crew successfully freed the entangled motor cruiser from the moorings and safely towed the casualty to the safety of the pontoon at Essex Marina.

The week concluded with a fourth shout on Saturday 4 July when the crew was tasked by HM Coastguard at 10.30pm, to again launch their Atlantic class lifeboat to assist a 17’ fishing boat with a lone male on board in difficulty off Foulness Point.

Initial reports from HM Coastguard indicated that the fishing boat had run aground, however upon arrival on scene it was determined that the casualty had run out of fuel.

A tow line was established and the fishing boat was safely towed into Essex Marina where they arrived at 1.35am Sunday morning, with the volunteer crew arriving home at around 3am.

RNLI Media contacts

For more information please contact Peter Harris, RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on: 07802 418298 or email: [email protected]

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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