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West Kirby RNLI’s speedy response to ‘man overboard’

Lifeboats News Release

West Kirby RNLI were called out to assist an elderly man who had accidentally fallen over the side of his friend’s boat that was anchored at West Kirby Moorings.

RNLI/David Edwards

West Kirby RNLI was requested by HM Coastguard to launch at 1:19pm having received a 999 call from the owner of a yacht anchored near to West Kirby Sailing Club. The individual had been unable to haul his friend back onto the deck of the vessel and so had to secure him to the stern whilst awaiting for assistance. Within 6 minutes the volunteer crew of West Kirby RNLI were launched. Minutes later they had reached the vessel and were able to pull the casualty out of the tide following his 15 minute immersion in the icy water.

Upon reaching the casualty, the volunteer crew carried out a medical assessment and quickly transferred the casualty to Sandy Lane slipway, having requested that an ambulance be called. The casualty was passed into the care of HM Coastguard with the support West Kirby Sailing Club, where he was taken into, whilst awaiting the arrival of the ambulance.

Speaking following the call out, Richard Diamond, West Kirby RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager said: ‘Fantastic team work by West Kirby RNLI, North West Ambulance service and local HM Coastguard teams who were all involved in providing quick assistance due to the severity of the water temperature. Never hesitate to make a quick call for assistance as individuals who are exposed to extreme cold temperatures run the risk of hypothermia. Today’s incident could have had a more troubling outcome but for the quick thinking of the yacht owner. Dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard if you believe that you or an individual are in danger.’

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.