Littlehampton RNLI search waters between Elmer and Felpham
On the evening of Tuesday 8 February, following a call from a member of the public expressing concern for a possible swimmer in difficulty, HM Coastguard tasked Littlehampton RNLI to launch and search the near shore area.
As dusk drew in the volunteer crews were paged, launching the station’s Atlantic 85 Renee Sherman inshore lifeboat. The air temperature was 10oC, but water temperatures in the sea were hovering around 8oC with a fresh south-westerly breeze and associated waves reducing visibility. The lifeboat headed west arriving at the position of the reported sighting at 5.52pm, just offshore from Elmer. With no immediate indication of a casualty in the water a shore parallel search was commenced westwards following the prevailing tidal flow. To increase visibility on the water the crew launched a white parachute flair at 6.20pm illuminating the sea surface over a broad area. Following an extensive search HM Coastguard stood down the search operation at 7.04pm and the lifeboat headed back to the RNLI boathouse in Littlehampton at Fisherman’s Quay.
Simon Tann, Deputy Launch Authority at Littlehampton for this incident, said:
'We thank the member of the public who called 999, asking for the Coastguard, for their vigilance. Although on this occasion our volunteer crew did not find any indication of a casualty in the water our charity is available 24/7 to assist those in distress at sea. The support of members of the public as eyes and ears to potential incidents is a key element of our life saving capabilities and we would always encourage calling 999 if there are any concerns about persons or animals in the water.'
RNLI media contacts
Anthony Fogg, Deputy Lifeboat Press Officer, Littlehampton RNLI 07823 509032 [email protected]
Paul Dunt, Regional Media Officer, London and South East 07785 296252 [email protected]
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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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