RNLI shares lifesaving messaging as heatwave expected to last into the weekend

Lifeboats News Release

With temperatures set to reach record levels for the year this weekend, the RNLI are reminding the public to follow their lifesaving advice if they are heading to the coast.

Forecasts show parts of the country may reach their hottest temperatures of the year on Saturday, so the charity is urging people to:

· Choose a lifeguarded beach where possible.

· Swim between the red and yellow flags.

· If you get into trouble in the water, Float to Live.

· If you see someone in trouble, call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.

Megan Manneh, Water Safety Delivery Manager at the RNLI, said: ‘After unsettled weather throughout much of the summer, we are expecting coasts to be busy this weekend, with potentially the last opportunity to enjoy some late summer sunshine.

‘RNLI lifeguards will still be present and delivering a service for local authorities on over 90 beaches across the UK, despite peak season finishing.

‘If you are planning on swimming at a lifeguarded beach, we highly recommend you swim between the red and yellow flags as this is the area most closely monitored by lifeguards.

‘If you get into trouble in the water, Float to Live. Tilt your head back with ears submerged and try to relax and control your breathing. Use your hands to help you stay afloat and then call for help or swim to safety if you can.

‘Please share these messages with your family and friends, we want everyone to enjoy our beautiful coast, whilst staying safe.’

Already this week on Tuesday Porthcawl RNLI attended a mass rescue of swimmers caught in a rip current, followed by a wing surfer in difficulty. On the same day Barry Dock RNLI were tasked to four people cut off by the tide and struggling in the water.

On Wednesday Yarmouth RNLI responded to paddleboarders who had found themselves stranded on a secluded beach.

Megan added: ‘‘With warmer weather many may make the most of the evenings our crews are seeing an increase in paddleboard rescues. Please remember to wear a buoyancy aid and have a means of communication with you, avoid off-shore winds and wear the correct leash.’

RNLI lifeguards will still be on some beaches until the end of September. To find your nearest RNLI lifeguarded beach and check its season dates, please visit: https://rnli.org/find-my-nearest/lifeguarded-beaches

RNLI Float to live advice:

· Tilt your head back with ears submerged

· Relax and try to control your breathing

· Move your hands to help you stay afloat

· Once you are over the initial shock, call for help or swim to safety

· In an emergency call 999 or 112– if you are at sea or on the beach ask for the coastguard

The lifesaving charity’s lifeboats based across the UK and Ireland remain on service 24/7, 365 days a year.

Notes to editors

· More information on how to Float to Live: https://rnli.org/safety/float

· The RNLI is proud to work in partnership with local authorities and beach owners to make our beaches safer for every one.

· More information about the Porthcawl incident https://rnli.org/news-and-media/2023/september/06/heatwave-results-in-mass-rescue-for-porthcawl-rnli-amidst-multiple-rescues

· Yarmouth incident https://rnli.org/news-and-media/2023/september/07/yarmouth-rnli-tasked-to-assist-four-paddle-boarders-in-difficultly

· Barry Dock incident (shown in video) https://rnli.org/news-and-media/2023/september/07/barry-dock-rnli-lifeboat-responds-to-people-cut-off-by-the-tide

RNLI/Nathan Williams

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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Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

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