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Early morning launch for Whitstable RNLI Lifeboat

Lifeboats News Release

The volunteer crew of the Whitstable Atlantic 85 lifeboat Lewisco had an early call on Friday morning when the lifeboat was launched to assist a 23ft yacht with two persons onboard aground in The Swale between Conyer Creek and Fowley Island.

The Whitstable Atlantic 85 Lifeboat.

RNLI/Chris Davey

The Whitstable Atlantic 85 Lifeboat.

Launching at around 2.20am the lifeboat arrived at the scene some 18-minutes later to find the vessel just west of the creek. The craft managed to free itself from the mud bank and was escorted towards the Swale Marina but in the pitch dark conditions and very high tide it was decided to anchor the yacht on a mooring in the main channel and for them to await daylight to enter the creek.

It transpired that the vessel had grounded the previous day and the two occupants had been stranded for some hours before the lifeboat arrived.

Lifeboat Helmsman Andy Williams said 'We would urge all of those who venture out onto the water in craft of whatever size to ensure that they have adequate navigation equipment and charts and that they are familiar with the area in which they are transiting”.

The lifeboat was released from the incident and arrived back at Whitstable at 04.42am. Weather conditions at the time of the call were overcast with light winds. This was the 5th call of the year for Whitstable's volunteer lifeboat crews.

Notes to editors

Whitstable RNLI Lifeboat Station was established in 1963 by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution and is one of 237 lifeboat stations around the shores of the UK and Ireland. The volunteer crews provide a maritime search and rescue service for the Kent coast. They cover the area between the Kingsferry Bridge on the Swale, in the west, around the south-eastern side of Sheppey and along the coast through Whitstable and Herne Bay to Reculver in the east and outwards into the Thames Estuary.

The station is equipped with an Atlantic 85 lifeboat named Lewisco, purchased through a bequest of a Miss Lewis of London who passed away in 2006.

RNLI media contacts

  • Chris Davey, Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer, Whitstable Lifeboat Station.
    07741 012004/ [email protected]

  • Paul Dunt, Regional Media Officer (South East), 0207 6207426, 07785 296252 [email protected]

  • For enquiries outside normal business hours, contact the RNLI duty press officer on 01202 336789

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.