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Three call-outs in 15 hours for Abersoch RNLI

Lifeboats News Release

The volunteer crew were tasked on three separate occasions between 11.30pm Thursday 27 July and 2.30pm Friday 28 July.

RNLI/Emma Wood

HM Coastguard first requested assistance late on Thursday evening, 27July, to a person who had sustained a possible head injury on Ynys Enlli (Bardsey Island). Due to the location the lifeboat was asked to attend the scene and assess/treat the casualty.

The lifeboat was launched with a full crew at 11.32pm into challenging conditions with poor visibility due to dark skies and mist and a moderate-to-rough sea state.

The lifeboat reached the island in good time at 12.10am and once at the landing point two crew were put ashore where they were met by the Warden who then transported them by quad bike to the casualty. The volunteer crew assessed and treated the casualty. Following a triage call with Ambulance Control the decision was made that the casualty should remain on the island rather than attempt the tricky transit to the mainland. The casualty’s family were able to monitor her recovery.

The two crew were transported back to lifeboat and the lifeboat returned to the station at 3.28am where it was then washed down and refuelled by the waiting shore crew.

No sooner had the lifeboat been refuelled the second call came through from HM Coastguard at 3.32am following a mayday call from a yacht in difficulty off Ynys Enlli (Bardsey Island). The 33ft yacht had drifted on it’s anchor onto the rocks and was hard aground and being bashed by the increasing swell.

The lifeboat was relaunched at 3.47am. Whilst the light and visibility were improving, the wind and swell had increased.

On arrival at the scene the crew were faced with the casualty vessel now to shore and bouncing off the rocky shoreline. There was sufficient water to enable them to get the casualty off his boat and swiftly into the lifeboat. The casualty’s welfare was quickly checked before moving into safer waters to carry out a more thorough assessment.

Porthdinllaen RNLI had also been tasked to the scene and they arrived a short time after. The casualty was then transferred to the Tamar class all-weather lifeboat where he could then be kept warm and dry for the trip back to the mainland.

Porthdinllaen lifeboat crew requested assistance to attempt to tow the casualty vessel from the rocks and the Y-Class lifeboat was deployed to assist in the shallow waters to secure a tow to Abersoch’s Atlantic 85 B-Class. It become apparent that it was not possible to safely establish a tow and following confirmation from Porthdinllaen and HM Coastguard the lifeboat departed the scene.

The lifeboat returned to the station at 6.08am where it was once again washed down and refuelled by the shore crew.

Phill Wood, Volunteer Helm at Abersoch RNLI said, ‘This was an amazing team effort between ourselves, Porthdinllaen and Holyhead Coastguard which enabled the shore crew and boat crew to work through the night to get the job done. Da iawn pawb!’

The third call-out came later in the day on Friday 28 July at 2.29pm following a request from British Divers Marine Life Rescue to assist with clearing the sea area off Machroes beach to allow a dolphin who was in labour to escape to the open sea.

Abersoch RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager, Wyn Jones, said ‘This was certainly a first for Abersoch RNLI at the end of what has been a very busy 15 hours for the volunteer crew’.

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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