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Whitstable RNLI recover derelict dinghy

Lifeboats News Release

Whitstable lifeboat crew have praised the actions of the Herne Bay National Coastwatch after the Whitstable lifeboat was launched to investigate a report of a partially submerged dinghy off Herne Bay on Tuesday morning.

Whitstable lifeboat returns to station following the launch to a derelict dinghy off Herne Bay on Tuesday.

RNLI/Chris Davey

Whitstable lifeboat returns to station following the launch to a derelict dinghy off Herne Bay on Tuesday.
Launching at 10.49 in response to the report from the NCI of a possible capsized vessel approximately 15ft in length and about 3-miles offshore from the NCI station in Herne Bay and in the direction of the Kentish Flats Windfarm the lifeboat arrived in the area and the crew located the craft , the hull of sailing dinghy.

The vessel was devoid of all rigging and fittings and the lifeboat crew were satisfied that the craft had not had recent occupation and had drifted from the shoreline somewhere and , to prevent any further reports of an incident , the lifeboat took the dinghy under tow and landed it ashore near to the Herne Bay Sailing Club .

The lifeboat crew where met onshore by members of the NCI and Herne Bay Sailing Club and they where happy to contact Foreshore Services to arrange for disposal of the dinghy.

Lifeboat Helmsman Ben Crosswell said “The NCI did very well to spot the partially submerged craft at that distance and whilst on our arrival the dinghy was found to be in a derelict condition and showing no signs of recent use it was a call well worth attending to make certain there was no persons involved and to prevent further reports to the coastguard”.

This was the 32nd call of the year for Whitstable lifeboat.


Notes to editors

Whitstable RNLI Lifeboat Station was established in 1963 by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution and is one of 237 lifeboat stations around the shores of the UK and Ireland. The volunteer crews provide a maritime search and rescue service for the Kent coast. They cover the area between the Kingsferry Bridge on the Swale, in the west, around the south-eastern side of Sheppey and along the coast through Whitstable and Herne Bay to Reculver in the east and outwards into the Thames Estuary.

The station is equipped with an Atlantic 85 lifeboat named Lewisco, purchased through a bequest of a Miss Lewis of London who passed away in 2006.


She is what is known as a rigid inflatable inshore lifeboat, the boat’s rigid hull being topped by an inflatable sponson. She carries a crew of four people.

RNLI media contacts

  • Chris Davey, Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer, Whitstable Lifeboat Station.
    07741 012004/ [email protected]

  • Paul Dunt RNLI Press Officer London/southeast/east Tel: 0207 6207416 Mob: (07785) 296252 [email protected]

  • For enquiries outside normal business hours, contact the RNLI duty press officer on 01202 336789


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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Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.