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Exmouth RNLI respond to kitesurfers in trouble

Lifeboats News Release

Exmouth RNLI volunteers went to the aid of three kitesurfers in difficulty on the River Exe earlier today.

RNLI/John Thorogood

Exmouth inshore lifeboat launches on service.

At 11.57am today Wednesday 18th October 2023, H.M. Coastguard requested the launch of Exmouth RNLI inshore lifeboat D-805 George Bearman II following a report of three kitesurfers struggling against the tide close to the River Exe Estuary. The launch was authorised by Exmouth RNLI Deputy Launch Authority, Neil Hurlock.

In windy conditions and choppy seas, the charity’s lifeboat with crew Henry Mock, Mark Cockman and Jake Butt launched at 12:03pm and immediately sped to the scene, reaching the kitesurfers at 12.11pm. All three casualties had tied to a mooring, unable to get back to the beach. They were taken on board the lifeboat to the safety of shore at Belshers Slipway. None of them were injured or required medical treatment.

The volunteer crew then returned to the scene where they recovered the kitesurfers equipment to avoid it becoming a hazard to other water users.

Having successfully completed the tasking, the lifeboat crew were stood down by H.M. Coastguard at 12.27pm at which time they returned to Exmouth Lifeboat Station. Once back on station, the lifeboat was then made ready for service a short time later.

Specific RNLI advice for kitesurfers can be found here :

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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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