Multi-agency search after report of person in the sea off Margate

Lifeboats News Release

Margate’s RNLI volunteers have taken part in a multi-agency search following reports of a person in the sea off Westgate-on-Sea.

Margate RNLI inshore lifeboat 'Alfred Alexander Staden' (RNLI Margate) (3)

RNLI Margate

Margate RNLI inshore lifeboat 'Alfred Alexander Staden' (RNLI Margate) (3)

UK Coastguard received a report from Kent Fire & Rescue around 9.30pm last night (Tuesday 28 July) stating they were responding to a call following a report of a person in the sea off Sea Road, Westgate Bay. Margate coastguard rescue team (CRT) had been tasked and Margate’s RNLI inshore lifeboat was asked to assist.

After launching, coastguards re-directed the lifeboat to St Mildred’s Bay where numerous torch lights ashore were identified as fire service personnel carrying out a shore search. After liaising with fire officers, the CRT directed the lifeboat to search across the bay, checking various yellow buoys while coastguard and fire service personnel checked the esplanade and shelters away from the water.

Several large accumulations of seaweed and floating debris were identified by the lifeboat and after an extensive search of the area both ashore and afloat and with no further reports all units were stood down around an hour later, the call considered a false alarm with good intent.

Ian Lowe, Deputy Launching Authority, Margate RNLI said: ‘We rely entirely on the general public to report anything or anyone that does not look right at sea or on the coastline, no call is too small or a wasted one – dial 999 and ask for coastguard.’

ENDS

RNLI Media contacts

· Peter Barker, RNLI Margate Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer 07974 064304 peter_barker@rnli.org.uk

· Paul Dunt, Regional Media Officer (SouthEast), 0207 6207416, 07786 668825 paul_dunt@rnli.org.uk

· For enquiries outside normal business hours, 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 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.

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