Barrow RNLI Launch to Assist Island Swimmer

Lifeboats News Release

Volunteer crew from the RNLI’s Barrow Lifeboat Station launched their inshore lifeboat this afternoon to go to the aid of a man on Piel Island who was feeling unwell

Barrow Inshore Lifeboat at Piel Island with Furness Coastguard aboard

RNLI/Furness Coastguard

Barrow ILB 'Vision of Tamworth'

The call for assistance came through from the regional HM Coastguard base in Holyhead at 12.20pm. The information received was that the man had become unwell after swimming across to Piel Island from Roa Island.

The crew was paged and the inshore lifeboat, ‘Vision of Tamworth’, was launched at 12-36pm with Jonny Long at the helm, assisted by Saul Tomlin and Alan Cleasby. The lifeboat transported members of Furness Coastguard and a stretcher across to Piel Island where the condition of the casualty was assessed. At one stage it was decided to call upon the services of Coastguard Rescue Helicopter 936 for assistance, but the helicopter was subsequently stood down. Instead, the casualty was placed on the stretcher and transported back to the Lifeboat Station before being transferred into the care of the North West Ambulance Service.

The lifeboat made another trip across to Piel Island to pick up the remaining member of the Furness Coastguard team. At 1-50pm the lifeboat was able to be rehoused and made ready for the next launch.

The weather at the time of the incident was fine and sunny with good visibility and the wind was south-easterly, Force 2. The next high water was due at 5-11pm with a predicted height of 7.8 metres.

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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