Drifting dinghies alert for Margate RNLI
Margate RNLI has responded to reports of multiple dinghies drifting seawards off the north Kent coast.
Around 4.30pm today (Friday 26 June) UK Coastguard received reports of three dinghies with a total of four persons on board drifting seawards from Minnis Bay, Birchington-on-Sea around four miles west of Margate. Swimmers and a kayak were reported to be attempting rescue.
Margate RNLI inshore lifeboat along with Margate Coastguard Rescue Team (CRT) were tasked to assist.
On arrival at the scene the lifeboat located an unmanned black inflatable ring and using this as a datum commenced a search of the area. Meanwhile the CRT made contact with the first informants who confirmed that the occupants of all craft involved had managed to return to shore safely.
The lifeboat returned to station, checking the bays on the way for any further dinghies that could be affected by the offshore wind.
Ian Lowe, Deputy Launching Authority, Margate RNLI said: “Inflatable dinghies are particularly dangerous and susceptible to being blown seawards in offshore wind conditions, we urge beachgoers to use extreme caution with these toys. Under no circumstances should people enter the sea to attempt the rescue of any that are being blown seawards, remain on shore, keep the dinghy in sight and dial 999 and ask for coastguard.”
Notes to editors
Margate lifeboat station has been operating since 1860. To learn more about the lifeboat station go to: https://rnli.org/find-my-nearest/lifeboat-stations/margate-lifeboat-station
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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 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.