RNLI Roker lifeguards team up with Sunderland Coastguard

Lifeguards News Release

On Friday 13 August, a distressed windsurfer was rescued in a joint effort by RNLI Roker lifeguards and the Sunderland Coastguard Rescue Team.

A person stands up on a yellow jet ski that has rescue equipment on the back. The person is in a wetsuit and wearing a yellow RNLI helmet and a red lifejacket.

RNLI/Derry Salter

An RNLI Lifeguard on the jet ski

At around 11am, Lead RNLI Lifeguard Supervisor Sean Mills received reports of a windsurfer who was struggling in the water around Roker Pier. Sean immediately called the Roker Lifeguard team to request a jet ski to assist the man.

Senior Lifeguard Andrew Brown attended the casualty, who had been swept out to sea by the strong offshore winds; the man was being blown against the pier. Andrew assisted the casualty onto the back of the rescue ski, where he returned him to shore safely.

However, at around 11:13am, a member of the public who was on Roker beach at the time of the incident phoned 999 and asked for the Coastguard. The Coastguard immediately deployed an inshore lifeboat as well as the Port of Sunderland Patrol boat.

As the RNLI Roker team had already rescued the casualty, the Coastguard Officers carried out a series of medical checks on the beach. Luckily, the casualty had not sustained any injuries.

An inshore lifeboat collected the wind surfer’s equipment and returned it to the man.

Lead RNLI Lifeguard Supervisor Sean Mills praised the joint effort: ‘Our RNLI Roker team worked closely with the Sunderland Coastguard team to safely return the wind surfer ashore, ensuring he suffered no injuries.

'The member of the public who remained calm and dialled 999 and asked for the Coastguard acted brilliantly in a stressful situation. This meant that both our lifeguard team and the British Coastguard were on hand to assist the wind surfer.’

If you find yourself in trouble at a lifeguarded beach, dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard.

For more information about staying safe at the beach, please visit: https://rnli.org/safety/beach-safety

Notes to editors

RNLI Roker lifeguard service has been operating since 2001. To learn more about the lifeguarded beach go to: https://rnli.org/find-my-nearest/lifeguarded-beaches/roker-beach

Lead Lifeguard Supervisor Sean Mills is available for interview.

Photo Credit

RNLI/Derry Salter

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For more information please contact Derry Salter, RNLI Media Engagement Placement on: 07929 673281 or email: derry_salter@rnli.org.uk

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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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