RNLI lifeboats and visiting cruise ship launch to the aid of capsized kayakers
Volunteers at RNLI Fishguard received the request to launch following multiple 999 calls to the coastguard reporting kayakers and swimmers in difficulty.
As it transpired there were no swimmers, but a group of seven kayakers had been caught in a squall which saw wind speed increase and torrential rain resulting in multiple kayaks capsizing. Three people were able to right themselves and made their way back towards lower town.
At anchor in the bay near to the group, was visiting cruise ship Hanseatic Spirit who also responded to HM Coastguard’s request and launched their safety boat to assist in the first instance.
Having been assessed plans were made to convey the casualties to lower town to be met by personnel from HM Coastguard Fishguard. Due to the level of the tide the Blue Peter VII was unable to access lower town and as a result the decision was made to transfer the casualties to the charities D class inshore lifeboat Edward Arthur Richardson which then took them ashore where they were left in the care of HM Coastguard.
'Todays launch shows how quickly conditions can change around our coast and we would like to take the opportunity to remind anyone venturing into or on to the water to be aware of the forecast and carry with them all recommend safety equipment for their activity, particularly a means of calling for help.
'This can be as simple as a mobile phone in a waterproof pouch kept within reach. If you find yourself or anyone else in difficulty in the water please call 999 or 112 and ask for the Coastguard.
'We would also like to thank the crew of the Hanseatic Spirit for their quick actions in launching their safety boat and assisting with the casualties and their kayaks.'
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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