Harwich RNLI volunteers assist people trapped in mud near Ipswich

Lifeboats News Release

In a multi-agency response yesterday (Thursday 13 January), volunteers from Harwich RNLI rescued two adults and a child stuck in mud, waist deep in water on a rising tide, close to the Orwell Country Park, Ipswich.

RNLI/Jon Bliss

Paged at 5:12pm by UK Coastguard, the volunteers were requested to launch Harwich’s Atlantic inshore lifeboat Tierney,Harvey, and Sonny Reid to reports of three people stuck in the mud near the Orwell Country Park. RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager Peter Bull also made the decision to launch the all-weather lifeboat with its small inflatable daughter boat, in case it was needed.

Arriving within 35 minutes of being paged, the volunteers found two adults and one child waist deep in water on a rising tide, with high water not due until 8:43pm. The inshore lifeboat delicately manoeuvred close enough to pull them aboard, where they were assessed by an RNLI trained casualty care volunteer.

The casualties were taken to the Orwell Yacht Club, where they were passed to the care of crews from the Coastguard and paramedics from the East of England Ambulance service, allowing both lifeboats and crews to return to station, where they were readied for service by 7:30pm.

Volunteer aboard the inshore lifeboat, Leam Donn (31), said: ‘It was inspiring to be a part of such a multi-agency operation with different teams working together seamlessly – as well as ourselves there must have been four coastguard teams, crews from Suffolk Fire and Rescue, and paramedics.

‘This is why we train twice a week for different scenarios. It’s not very often we get people stuck in mud round here, but this service went well working as a team. The helm managed to get the lifeboat really close allowing us to extract the people from the mud and water and get them to dry land, where they could be checked over by paramedics. All in all, a job well done by everyone involved.’

To ensure people enjoy their time safely at the coast, the RNLI has a few simple tips:

*Keep a means of calling for help protected and attached to you at all times

*Tell someone where you are going, and when you expect to be back

*Check the weather and tide times

*Read signs and be aware of local hazards

*In a coastal emergency call 999 and ask for the Coastguard

RNLI media contacts

For more information, please contact:

Richard Wigley, RNLI Harwich volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on 07903424698 or [email protected],

Clare Hopps, Regional Media Officer on 07824518641 or [email protected] or contact the RNLI Press Office on 01202 336789.


Leam Donn

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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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