Girvan Lifeboat launches to child blown out to sea.
Girvan Lifeboat launches to rescue child in inflatable blown out to sea.
Girvan all-weather Shannon class Lifeboat made best speed to the area and arrived on scene shortly after launching, due to the nature of the incident other vessels in the area made their way towards the location, as well as UK Coastguard Rescue 199, and a Lynx and Merlin Helicopter in the area from Royal Navy & Coastguard Rescue teams from Girvan and Ayr.
In this instance the inflatable has been used before by the family safely many times and is usually tethered to the shore, but the over exuberant young lad ran and hopped in before it was tethered, by this time it was too late and it was caught by the wind, it only takes seconds and can happen to anyone in the blink of an eye.
Bystanders and parents attempted to swim to reach the inflatable, but were unable to do so and returned to the beach and dialled 999
Girvan lifeboat located the small inflatable and casualty approx 1 mile offshore and recovered both the child and inflatable to the lifeboat, where the casualty was assessed by our casualty care trained crew.
Girvan lifeboat returned to Girvan and met by Girvan Coastguard Rescue Team, where the casualty was handed over to the Scottish Ambulance Service for further assessment and treatment, in this instance the young casualty was none the worse for wear, and had sustained no injuries.
The lifeboat returned to berth and made ready for the next service call.
This incident could have ended up so much worse, with the potential for multiple casualties, Please heed the advice repeatedly advertised and posted by the RNLI, HM Coastguard and other official bodies, inflatables are toys, they are not intended for the sea or open water, please keep them for the pool in a supervised location.
It only takes a few moments with a change in tide or gust or change in direction of wind to carry an inflatable far out to sea, If you think you see someone in trouble on the coast or at sea dial 999 straight away and ask for the coastguard.
This is the 2nd callout during the Covid-19 lockdown, with our crew and other emergency services having to attend what was essentially a preventable incident and although restrictions may be easing somewhat, we ask the the travel guidelines are adhered to in relation to travelling to the beach or coast, and if you are near the coast or at sea, please think about your trip or activity, Is it necessary? could I be putting myself or others at risk.
During this time of coronavirus although our fundraising activities remain impacted our crews are on call 24/7 ready to respond to the next call for help.
No further specific details will be made available in relation to this callout.
Further information regarding inflatables can be found in this previous RNLI news release
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.