St Bees RNLI save pleasure cruiser from rocks

Lifeboats News Release

At 10:30pm on Friday 19 June the volunteers at St Bees RNLI were paged to go to rescue a small pleasure cruiser with engine failure. The boat with two people on board was being dragged towards the rocks.

The small vessel with engine failure was close to the shore near Whitehaven Harbour.

The crew launched in under 20 minutes from being paged, whilst still conforming to the strict guidelines put in place to ensure the lifeboat can launch safely during the Covid19 crisis.

With the tide pushing the broken down boat nearer the rocks the RNLI crew quickly made their way to the vessel. The small boat had deployed their anchor but the power of the tide was still dragging them towards a local landmark, Whitie rock, just north of the harbour.

On arrival at the vessel, the lifeboat volunteers checked that both people on board were okay. In the large swell that was making life uncomfortable for those onboard the small craft, the lifeboat crew attached a towline.

They then towed the stricken vessel in to the safety of Whitehaven Harbour where they were met by members of the Whitehaven Coastguard Rescue Team. The lifeboat then returned to the station to have everything disinfected and made ready for the next shout.

Dick Beddows, St Bees RNLI Operations Manager, said: ‘The two people onboard the pleasure craft did the right thing. They deployed their anchor to help them from being dragged onto the rocks and used a VHF marine radio to call for help as soon as they got into difficulties.

'This is however the third shout in recent months that our volunteers have been called to where lifejackets were not being worn. A lifejacket will save your life but is useless unless worn. Don’t wait until you are in difficulty before putting one on. The next casualty we get called to may not be so lucky.'

Notes to editors

RNLI media contacts

For more information please telephone Colin Wadey, St Bees RNLI volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on 07742207222 or [email protected] or Nuala McAloon, Regional Media Officer on 00353876483547 [email protected] or contact the RNLI Press Office 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 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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