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Fleetwood RNLI self-launches to rescue casualties on jet ski

Lifeboats News Release

On Saturday 16 September Fleetwood RNLI self-launched to rescue casualties on a jet ski with a mechanical failure.

Fleetwood D-Class Inshore Lifeboat at sea

RNLI/Chris Jameson

Fleetwood D-Class Inshore Lifeboat

Volunteer crew members were welcoming visitors to the charity’s lifeboat station for the Fleetwood Heritage Weekend, when they observed two jet skis overloaded with passengers and wearing incorrect safety equipment.

The group was provided with safety advice from the lifeboat crew and they then wore lifejackets. One of the jet skis then suffered a mechanical failure, and the other jet ski began towing the jet ski back to Knott End.

The lifeboat crew advised the group to tow with the fewest people possible. The rope being used to tow then snapped, so the towing jet ski began to drop off its passengers at Knotts End, to pick up the casualties on the remaining jet ski.

Crew members who were monitoring the situation self-launched the RNLI’s Inshore Lifeboat, Harbert, at 3:07pm to provide assistance. The crew members notified the Coastguard, who then paged the lifeboat crew.

The jet ski with the mechanical failure then started to submerge with its passengers entering the water. Whilst waiting for the lifeboat to launch, a member of the crew indicated to another jet skier about the situation, who then began to assist the casualties.

With the four casualties in the water, one was recovered by the assisting jet ski, one swam to shore, and two were assisted by the RNLI’s inshore lifeboat. All casualties were safely assisted to shore to the Knott End slipway and were checked over by North West Ambulance Service.

Captain David Eccles, Lifeboat Operations Manager for Fleetwood said:

‘When using powered watercraft, it is important to enjoy yourselves however due to the unpredictable environments at the Fylde Coast it’s essential to always wear a personal flotation device and ensure your watercraft is well maintained for your chosen activities.’

Notes to Editors

  • Fleetwood’s RNLI All-Weather Lifeboat is named KENNETH JAMES PIERPOINT and is a Shannon class boat.
  • Fleetwood’s RNLI Inshore Lifeboat is named HARBET and is a D-Class boat.
  • Photo Credit: RNLI/Chris Jameson
  • Fleetwood lifeboat station has been operating since 1859. To learn more about the lifeboat station go to:

RNLI media contacts

For more information contact Amy Teebay, Deputy Lifeboat Press Officer, via [email protected], David Devereux, Fleetwood RNLI Press Officer on 07591 675733 / [email protected] or Eleri Roberts, RNLI Regional Media Officer on 07468 353082 / [email protected]

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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For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

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.