Life saved by Appledore RNLI.

Lifeboats News Release

A life was saved last night by Appledore RNLI in view of the lifeboat station.

RNLI/Alex Hall

Live saved at Appledore RNLI Sunday 31 May
At around 8.15 yesterday evening, Sunday 31 May, a call came into the launch authority at Appledore RNLI saying that a person was reported in difficulty swimming by the inner pulley buoy in the Torridge Taw Estuary opposite the lifeboat station. The inshore lifeboat was launched immediately.

A 22 year old man had gone swimming from Greysands, just after low tide when the outgoing river water is fighting the incoming tide in a narrow deep channel. Very luckily he managed to get to a rock by the buoy but the rush of incoming water gave very little time. The inshore lifeboat quickly picked up the shocked and exhausted casualty who, dressed only in shorts, was very cold with hypothermia likely to set in quickly. First aid was administered by the crew and an ambulance requested. The casualty was administered further first aid at the station and passed over to the paramedics as soon as they arrived and taken to North Devon Hospital.

Appledore RNLI request that no one ever goes swimming off Greysands. It is a notoriously dangerous piece of water, a deep channel in a double river estuary, where tides can flow at up to eight knots at times; way faster than an Olympic swimmer can swim. The water at the moment is also still extremely cold. This is not an area which ever has lifeguards as it is an area where it is strongly recommend never entering the water, due to the strong tides and rip currents.

Anyone planning a visit to the coast should remember and follow RNLI safety advice:

§ Have a plan - check the weather forecast, tide times and read local hazard signage

§ Keep a close eye on your family – on the beach and in the water

§ Don’t allow your family to swim alone

§ Don’t use inflatables

§ If you fall into the water unexpectedly, FLOAT TO LIVE. Fight your instinct to thrash around, lean back, extend your arms and legs, and Float

§ In an emergency dial 999, and ask for the Coastguard

RNLI/David Foster

Life saved at Appledore RNLI Sunday 31 May

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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Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.