Jersey RNLI volunteer crews rescue two people from light aircraft ditched in sea
At 1.54pm yesterday (Thursday 3 November), all three of Jersey's RNLI lifeboats were requested by Jersey Coastguard to search for the flight crew of a Piper aircraft that had reportedly ditched in the sea off the south east coast of the Island.
The RNLI crews arrived on the scene in force six to seven winds with two to three metre swell and commenced a search of the area in coordination with the Jersey Coastguard and the other search and rescue assets. Two people were found safe and well relatively quickly in a life raft by the St Helier inshore lifeboat. They were then transferred to the all-weather lifeboat and transported back to St Helier where they were met by Paramedics.
They used their skill to fly the plane into the wind to slow the speed and were able to land in the sea. They already had their lifejackets on, life raft ready and were able to climb onto the wing as the plane took a few minutes before it started to sink. They also activated their personal locator beacon which gave the RNLI crew a good directional signal to follow. From ditching in the sea to their rescue, the casualties were in the water for just under 1 hour.
If you are heading out to sea this winter, please check your equipment and make sure you are carrying the right safety equipment for your journey.
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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