Dog walkers rescued from mud by Coastguard and Hoylake RNLI hovercraft
Hoylake RNLI hovercraft was requested to launch by the UK Coastguard at 2.28pm on Saturday 23 January to reports of two dog walkers stuck in mud in Leasowe Bay. Wirral and Crosby Coastguard Rescue Teams had also been tasked.
With the tide flooding, Hoylake’s Inshore Rescue Hovercraft Hurley Spirit and her volunteer crew launched and quickly headed to the casualties’ reported location on the west side of Leasowe Island.
The hovercraft arrived on scene, where the causalities had been extracted from the mud by Coastguard officers but were surrounded by rising water. Given the hazardous terrain and cold weather, the causalities were brought on board the hovercraft and the RNLI crew wrapped them in blankets to keep them warm.
The hovercraft flew the casualties to the shoreline and transferred them to Coastguard officers, who carried out a further medical assessment. Fortunately neither required any further medical attention and they were reunited with their dog, who had been looked after by Coastguard officers on the shore.
Hoylake RNLI volunteer hovercraft commander Matt Pownall-Jones said: ‘The casualties had a lucky escape thanks to quick intervention by the Coastguard and our RNLI volunteers. Treacherous areas of mud are common on our local beaches, especially in Leasowe Bay. Please take care and if you get stuck in mud, spread your weight across the surface, avoid moving and stay as calm as you can. Dial 999 for the Coastguard and if you don’t have a phone, shout for help.’
‘At this difficult time, we appreciate that people who are lucky enough to live by the coast will want to visit for exercise. But the RNLI urges everyone to think carefully about heading out and to avoid taking unnecessary risks in case you get into difficulty.’
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.