The volunteer RNLI crew at Largs Lifeboat station were initially paged shortly after midday, on Wednesday 14 June 2023, with the second pager activation at 4.15pm.
On arrival at the lifeboat station for the first call out the volunteer crew were advised that they were being tasked to assist a small rhib with two people on board that had suffered engine failure between Ardbeg and Toward point.
After launching the stations Atlantic 85 Lifeboat ‘R A Wilson’ the crew made best speed to the location and after a short search were alongside the rhib.
After discussion with the vessel’s occupants, it was agreed they would be towed into Rothesay Harbour.
Once the vessel was secured on a pontoon the Lifeboat crew were released from service and returned to station, where the Lifeboat was recovered, refuelled, and made ready for the next service call.
The second call out of the day saw the volunteer crew launching to reports of either a paddleboard or upturned kayak floating in a North Westerly direction off Wemyss Bay towards Bute.
A member of the public on the shore had dialled 999 to advise the UK Coastguard of this object and this prompted local Coastguard rescue teams and the RNLI Lifeboat at Largs being launched to search the area from the sea and the shore.
On arrival at the location given by the first informant the volunteer crew onboard the Lifeboat found a large tree trunk, which from the shore could look like an upturned kayak. To ensure no further call outs to this object happened the crew floated it to shore where it was dragged clear of the water by the Coastguard rescue teams.
With no persons or vessels in danger the Lifeboat was released and returned to station where it was once again made ready for the next service call.
This call out was deemed a false alarm with good intent.
Commenting on todays call outs Launching Authority John Knowles wanted to thank the crew for responding twice in short time frames and in unusually hot temperatures for Scotland. He also wanted to advise that although the second call out was to a piece of Tree this could easily have been something more serious and would like to advise all members of the public that if the do see something suspicious on the water dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard who will take all relevant details and if needed launch the Emergency services.
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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