Harwich RNLI assist capsized sailor near Felixstowe Ferry

Lifeboats News Release

Lifeboat volunteers from Harwich RNLI assisted a good Samaritan who had pulled a sailor from the water after capsizing his dinghy in the River Deben.

Just after 4pm on 13 July, Harwich’s Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat - Tierney, Harvey and Sonny Reid - launched with four volunteers aboard, and made best possible speed to Felixstowe Ferry, on the River Deben. Having been requested by UK Coastguard to locate and assist a sailor who had capsized their dinghy, and become separated from it by the fast flowing tide.

Arriving on scene it was discovered the sailor had been pulled from the water by a passing good Samaritan. An RNLI casualty care trained crew member examined the sailor, but no further medical attention was required.

The sailor and his dinghy were soon reunited ashore, and passed to the care of the Felixstowe Coastguard Rescue Team. The lifeboat and volunteer crew returned to station, where the lifeboat was refuelled and readied for its next service by 5:30pm.

The crew of the lifeboat would like to pass their thanks to the good Samaritan for their swift actions in rescuing the sailor from the fast flowing river.

Helm Paul Griffin, said: ‘Today’s service was a classic example of the importance of wearing a lifejacket whenever you go afloat. You never know when the unexpected will happen, but a lifejacket will keep you afloat, keep your airways clear of the water, reduce panic, and crucially give time for help to arrive’

‘If you happen to find yourself unexpectedly in the water without a lifejacket, simply float to live. Fight your instincts to thrash around, lean back, extend your arms and legs, and get your breathing under control. Only then call for help or swim to safety.’

RNLI media contacts

For more information, please contact:

Richard Wigley, RNLI Harwich volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on 07903424698 or richard_wigley@rnli.org.uk,

Clare Hopps, Regional Media Officer on 07824518641 or clare_hopps@rnli.org.uk or contact the RNLI Press Office on 01202 336789.

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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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