Ilfracombe lifeboat launches to assist people cut off by tide

Lifeboats News Release

The RNLI Ilfracombe D class lifeboat was tasked by the Coast Guard on Saturday 24 April at 3.10 p.m. to assist three people cut off by tide at Hele Bay, near Ilfracombe.

D class lifeboat at sea

RNLI Ilfracombe

Library image Ilfracombe RNLI D class

The D class inshore lifeboat Deborah Brown III was quickly launched by the volunteer crew and made best speed in a strong 20 mph easterly wind to arrive at Hele Bay just a few minutes later. The three casualties were found stranded on rocks by the rising tide and were cold and wet having tried to walk back to Hele Bay.

Volunteer crew member Gillian Cole, went ashore onto the rocks with lifejackets for the casualties. The lifeboat then was manoeuvred against the rocks and the three casualties were then assisted into the lifeboat. The casualties were then taken to Hele Bay beach where they were taken ashore and placed into the care of Ilfracombe Coast Guard. The shout was the first for newly passed out inshore lifeboat crew member Dom Langham.

RNLI Volunteer Helm Stuart Carpenter says, ‘ the tide can come in very quickly and catch people out. Fortunately, today no one was hurt, however we would urge people to check the tide timetables before walking along the shoreline. We would always recommend that people carry a means of calling for help and if they get into difficulties dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard.’

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.

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