Islay RNLI in search for overdue kayaker

Lifeboats News Release

Islay’s volunteer lifeboat crew were requested to launch by UK Coastguard yesterday at 3.45pm (July 12th) in the search for an overdue kayaker without a phone or life jacket off the south east coast of Islay.

Islay RNLI returning down the Sound of Islay

RNLI/Tony Morrison

Islay RNLI returning down the Sound of Islay

The Severn class lifeboat Helmut Schroder of Dunlossit II launched and made good speed to the coast surrounding Aros Bay where the kayaker was expected to be. They were overdue without a means of communication or life jacket and a concerned family member dialled 999 asking for the Coastguard. They had been expected back nearly to two hours earlier having planned to only go for a half hour paddle.

While the RNLI lifeboat and a local boat searched the area, further information from the family helped the Coastguard locate the kayaker safe and well on land. The Coastguard UK rescue helicopter was also called to the incident. The kayaker had taken an alternate course than planned and contacted their family once home again. The RNLI lifeboat was stood down and returned to Port Askaig where, once refuelled it was ready for service again.

If you’re planning to be at sea this summer, even for a short time, inform someone of your departure time, route and expected return time and location. Always remember to wear appropriate clothing for the conditions along with a personal floatation device (buoyancy aid or life jacket). Carry a means of contacting someone in case you need help. This could be a mobile phone in a waterproof case, VHF radio or a Personal Locator Beacon (PLB).

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.