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Busy start to June for Mudeford RNLI with seven requests to launch

Lifeboats News Release

With seven requests to launch, Mudeford RNLI’s volunteer crew have been working hard to keep their local area as safe as possible.

Mudeford RNLI

RNLI/Nathan Williams

Mudeford RNLI

At the beginning of the month, the crew responded to a request to assist the crew of a stranded jet ski that had broken down off Southbourne Beach and was being blown offshore.

The owner, who was not the driver at the time, raised the alarm to the Coastguard who requested the launch. The lifeboat launched at 4.18pm and arrived on scene at 4.25pm, directed by the National Coastwatch Institution (NCI), who could see the casualty.

The volunteer lifeboat crew arrived to find the jet ski was already being towed towards the shore by another jet ski. Due to the potential hazard from breaking waves at the shoreline, the lifeboat took over the tow and headed towards the shore. At the surf line, the lifeboat anchored near the shore, enabling the owner to wade out and swap with the driver of the jet ski.

The jet ski had suffered a flat battery and was restarted by the owner, with aid of a power pack. The lifeboat then escorted the jet ski back to Mudeford where it continued alone onto Wick. The lifeboat then returned to station at 5.08pm.

Mudeford RNLI Helm Nathan Jauns said: ‘This rescue demonstrated excellent teamwork with the NCI from Hengistbury Head. The owner was able to retrieve the casualty vessel with a powerpack.’

A few days later, an alarm was raised by the family of a man who was missing having last been seen on shore at Mudeford Spit. The volunteer lifeboat crew initially carried out a shoreline search of the spit, in harbour, before heading to the beach side and on to Hengistbury Head. With no sighting, the search was extended and continued onto Southbourne beach and Boscombe Pier. At 5.28pm the man was found safe and well. All search teams were stood down and the lifeboat then returned to station at 5.48pm.

Andy Hack, Mudeford RNLI Deputy Launching Authority, said: 'This launch is a great example of how the Mudeford lifeboat crew can provide invaluable assistance in the search for missing people. Coordinating with search parties and other emergency services, we can cover a large area of coastline. We are delighted the man was found safe and well.'

The following day, at 12.35pm, the Mudeford RNLI volunteer crew responded to a request to assist two swimmers in difficulty between Boscombe and Bournemouth piers. The two teenage swimmers had swum out to a yellow marker buoy and were struggling to make it back to shore. The alarm was raised by an onlooker near the East Cliff railway.

The Mudeford lifeboat arrived on scene at 12.42pm and commenced a search for the two casualties. Coordinating with National Coastline Institution (NCI) Hengistbury and other emergency services, a complete search of the area resulted in the two swimmers being located on shore. It was established the casualties had swum to a buoy but on returning found themselves being swept away from the shore. They eventually managed to reach land further down Bournemouth beach. No medical attention was required and the Mudeford lifeboat left the scene at 1.17pm returning to station at 1.41pm.

Mudeford RNLI Helm Ian Parker said: ‘It can be dangerous to swim away from shore, even with a floatation device. Tides and currents can be extremely tiring and objects like buoys are often much further out than they appear from land.’

Richard Stride, Mudeford RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager, added, ‘It is difficult to spot swimmers in the water, which means that not only are they difficult to find, but are also in danger from other boats.

'We have had a busy month to date and we are delighted to help. I would like to commend our volunteers for their hard work.'


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