RNLI lifeguards in multi team rescue of kayaker near Tynemouth Pier
RNLI lifeguards and lifeboat crew worked together yesterday (Wednesday 22 July) to rescue a man from his kayak just north of Tynemouth Pier.
The charity’s lifeguards were patrolling the beach at King Edwards Bay when lifeguard Eira Hegarty spotted a man in a kayak that was taking on water. He was in difficulty around 400 metres offshore.
Eira alerted Senior RNLI Lifeguard Tom Ormston who radioed his colleagues at nearby Longsands South beach to launch their inshore rescue boat (IRB).
The IRB with RNLI lifeguards Madeline Squires as helm and Georgina Rogers as crew, reached the man within three minutes.
They discovered that his kayak had developed a hole and was gradually sinking.
Thankfully other than this damage, the man himself was unharmed and in good spirits. He was also well prepared as he had his mobile phone and had already called 999 and asked for the Coastguard.
The lifeguards updated the Coastguard and let them know they were on scene.
Georgina and Madeline waited in the bay with the kayaker, before handing him over to Tynemouth RNLI’s inshore lifeboat (ILB), which had also been paged to the scene.
He was then transported to North Shields Fish Quay on the ILB and reunited with his damaged kayak.
RNLI Lifeguard Supervisor, Sean Mills, said: ‘It was a fantastic team effort with our charity’s lifeguards not only working with a neighbouring beach but also with RNLI lifeboat volunteers from Tynemouth.
‘As the man’s kayak was rapidly taking on water, this swift joined-up response ensured that things didn’t escalate into something more serious.
‘The kayaker himself also really helped the situation, as he did exactly the right thing by calling 999 and asking for the Coastguard.’
For RNLI beach safety advice, please visit: https://rnli.org/safety/beach-safety
RNLI Picture caption
The library photographs (taken before COVID-19 restrictions) show from left to right, RNLI Lifeguards Madeline Squires and Georgina Rogers. Credit: RNLI.
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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.