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Three shouts in two days for Fowey RNLI lifeboat volunteers

Lifeboats News Release

In a busy August weekend, Fowey RNLI volunteers assisted in rescues involving a woman and dog cut off by the tide, an unmanned dinghy sighting and a capsized powerboat.

On Saturday August 19 at 4.23pm, the Falmouth Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre requested the launch of Fowey’s inshore lifeboat after receiving reports of two people cut off by the tide at Little Lantic. Given the weather conditions, with a force 5 on shore wind and a moderate sea, it was decided to launch Fowey’s all-weather lifeboat as well as the inshore one. The volunteer crews arrived on scene at 5.45pm. Large waves were breaking heavily onto the rocks preventing the inshore crew from safely recovering the casualties. At this time it was discovered that the casualties were a lady and her dog. The coastguard helicopter was tasked to assist and on arrival at the scene, a winchman was lowered onto the rocks and from there was able to recover both the woman and her dog. The helicopter then landed on the cliff top and handed the casualty to the Polruan Coastguard team.

At 7.15pm the pagers went off for the second time that day. The volunteer all-weather crew were tasked to proceed west beyond Dodmin to Port Loe where reports had been received of an apparently unmanned dinghy drifting about half a mile offshore. The lifeboat arrived on scene at just after 8pm and quickly located the dinghy. Close inspection revealed that there was no one onboard and nothing to suggest that anyone had been onboard the dinghy recently. The dinghy was recovered onto the lifeboat at the request of the coastguard so as to avoid it being an obstacle to others and to avoid further reports of sightings.

The pagers went off for the Fowey RNLI lifeboat crews for the third time that weekend on Sunday August 20 at 12.22pm. It was reported that a powerboat had capsized while attempting to land on the beach at Lantic Bay, resulting in two casualties, one with a head injury.

Volunteer crew, helm Amelia Luck and crew members James Dowrick and Ross Jezard launched the inshore D class lifeboat first, and 45 minutes later the all-weather lifeboat was also launched to assist with the recovery of the casualties. Once on scene Ross and Amelia were landed ashore, through the breaking waves, to assess the casualties. Crew member Callum Pritchard then transferred from the all-weather to the inshore boat to assist with the evacuation. Once assessed it was decided to take both casualties on the inshore lifeboat across to the all-weather boat, which was standing by just offshore. Looe and Polruan coastguard teams were on the scene and assisted the Fowey crew in getting the casualties onboard the inshore boat in a strong tidal swell. The casualties were then taken to Fowey to await the arrival of an ambulance.

Fowey Lifeboat Operations Manager Chris Ogg said: ‘We always recommend that people check the weather forecast before going in, on or around the water and be aware of changing weather conditions and tide times and heights. Wind strength can cause a rapid change in water conditions. In addition, people should check the swell forecast as bigger swells could result in coastal locations which are not normally reached by waves being swamped. Always carry a means of calling for help on your person and call 999 and ask for the coastguard if you are in danger or see someone in danger.'

Fowey RNLI

Casualty being rescued from powerboat capsize

Fowey RNLI

Challenging weather conditions for Fowey crew

Fowey RNLI

One of the casualties being transferred in the inshore lifeboat

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.