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Walker rescued from thick mud by Hoylake RNLI in Bank Holiday incident

Lifeboats News Release

When a walker found herself stuck waist-deep in thick mud at West Kirby on Bank Holiday Monday, a multi-agency effort was launched to rescue her.

RNLI/Daniel Whiteley

Hoylake RNLI hovercraft crew rescued a walker from thick mud at West Kirby beach

Hoylake RNLI hovercraft Hurley Spirit was tasked to the incident by HM Coastguard at 1.44pm on Monday 29 May. The casualty was stuck in mud at the south end of West Kirby Marine Lake.

The RNLI hovercraft and her volunteer crew launched and headed to the scene. Wirral and Flint Coastguard Rescue Teams, Merseyside Police and the North West Ambulance Service had also been tasked.

On arrival, the Hoylake RNLI hovercraft crew found the casualty firmly stuck in a channel of shallow water and unable to reach the shore across the hazardous terrain. The hovercraft landed carefully alongside the casualty and the crew deployed mud boards and mats around her to provide them all with a solid surface.

The RNLI crew were then able to swiftly extract the casualty from the mud and bring her on board the hovercraft. She was assessed for any medical conditions and although she was feeling shock and the effects of the cold mud, she required no urgent treatment. Coastguard officers had crossed the beach with a stretcher, which the casualty was encouraged to use for further safety.

With reassurance from the RNLI crew and plenty of blankets to keep her warm, the casualty was flown ashore on the hovercraft and landed at Sandy Lane Slipway, where she was passed to the care of the Coastguard and ambulance service.

With the casualty safely ashore, the hovercraft returned to the lifeboat station for a thorough wash down.

Hoylake RNLI Second Coxswain and hovercraft commander Tony Warburton said: ‘Our crew were glad we could assist the casualty to safety after she got into difficulty in thick mud, which is common to beaches all around the Merseyside coast. With more good weather on the way, we’re expecting many more people to head to the coast over half-term and would always advise visiting a lifeguarded beach, checking the weather forecast and tide times, and looking out for local safety signage.’

‘If you get stuck in mud, try and retrace your steps to safety or spread your weight as evenly as you can. Avoid moving, stay calm, and discourage others from trying to help as they may get stuck themselves. Instead, dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard, who will send trained and equipped emergency services to help.’

RNLI media contacts

For more information please contact:

Dan Whiteley, Lifeboat Press Officer on 07799 851 316 or email [email protected]

Claire Elshaw, RNLI Regional Media Officer on 07468 353 082 or email [email protected]

RNLI Press Office 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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