Newcastle RNLI comes to the aid of two people after crew of rib requests help
Newcastle RNLI’s volunteer crew came to the aid of two people on a rigid inflatable boat and responded to a separate false alarm within 13 hours on Saturday.
The volunteer crew first responded to their pagers just after 7.10am on Saturday (4 June) after the all-weather lifeboat, the Leonard Kent, was requested to assist a rib with six people onboard, two of whom were suffering the severe effects of seasickness.
The vessel had been enroute to the Isle of Man from Ardglass and was approximately 12 miles offshore when the crew requested help.
Weather conditions at the time were challenging with a 4m sea swell and a north easterly-easterly Force 5 wind.
The all-weather lifeboat under Coxswain Niall McMurray, immediately made its way to the scene to meet the rib. On arrival, the lifeboat crew assessed the situation before taking the two sick passengers onboard. The crew then checked them over and reassured them as they were then brought back to Ardglass Harbour where they were handed into the care of Newcastle Coastguard.
The second call out later that evening came shortly after 6pm when concerns were raised for a pleasure craft close to Maggies Leap. However, this turned out to be a false alarm and the volunteer crew were stood down shortly after arriving at the station.
Speaking following the call outs, Newcastle RNLI Coxswain Niall McMurray said: ‘Conditions at sea were challenging on Saturday morning but we were glad to be able to bring the casualties safely ashore when they were unwell. The second call transpired to be a false alarm, but I would like to commend my fellow crew members who responded so quickly again, ready to respond and go to the aid of others.
‘As we head into the summer months, we want to remind everyone to enjoy themselves, but to also make sure you stay safe and know what to do in an emergency. It is important that anyone visiting the coast understands the risks of the environment. It can be very unpredictable, particularly during early summer when the risk of cold water shock significantly increases, as air temperatures warm but water temperatures remain dangerously cold. If you get into trouble in the water, Float to Live: lean back, using your arms and legs to stay afloat. Control your breathing, then call for help or swim to safety. In a coastal emergency, call 999 or 112 for the Coastguard.’
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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