Sunday, 31 July 2011

SECONDS COUNT…

This afternoon at 3.15pm Liverpool Coastguard received a report from a member of the public that there was a small boat adrift with nobody aboard off the ‘The Battery’ at Morecambe, Lancashire.

A coastguard from Morecambe Coastguard Rescue Team quickly assessed that the boat ‘Toucan’ was drifting toward Heysham. The RNLI Hovercraft also from Morecambe was requested to launch and retrieved the 22ft vessel, towing it back to Morecambe before securing it close to the RNLI boathouse.

Extensive investigations ensued, through local contacts, to ascertain the owner of the ‘Toucan’ and at 7.10 this evening Liverpool Coastguard received information that the boat was very likely to come adrift again and that acquaintances of the owner would attempt to take it back to its original mooring.

At 8.30pm Liverpool Coastguard received a report that a group of people including a child were trying to secure the ‘Toucan’ but were in imminent danger of being cut off by the fast incoming tide. Once again the Morecambe Coastguard Rescue Team and Morecambe RNLI Inshore Lifeboat were requested to go to the scene by Liverpool Coastguard. Simultaneously Liverpool Coastguard received a 999 call from one of the men trying to recover the boat, that he was then surrounded by water and had his young son with him who was extremely cold and upset.

Morecambe RNLI Hovercraft launched to the father and son, returning them ashore to the mother and a waiting ambulance. A third man, who made it to the ‘Toucan’, returned it to its original mooring under constant surveillance by both coastguards and the RNLI. Once the vessel was moored he was assisted back ashore by the Morecambe RNLI Inshore Lifeboat.


Watch Officer Ian Jackson of Liverpool Coastguard said,

“Whilst we understand these people had every good intention when trying to retrieve the ‘Toucan’ we cannot emphasise enough that attempting this at twilight, without any safety or life saving equipment or even a torch is extremely rash, especially so as they took with them a youngster.

Always check the weather and tidal conditions before you set out on a visit to the coast so that you can prepare accordingly. Consider whether you could become cut off and do not take risks.”


CHECK TIDES AND WEATHER CONDITIONS BEFORE YOU SET OUT SAY SWANSEA COASTGUARD

Swansea Coastguard are warning people to check tidal conditions before they set out after two groups of teenagers have become cut off by the tide in the same place within days of each other.
Swansea Coastguard received a 999 call from four 16-year-old girls who had been cut off by the tide at Jenny’s Gut at 6.10 pm this evening. The coastguard sent the Mumbles Coastguard Rescue Team to the scene and requested the Mumbles RNLI lifeboat to launch. The coastguard team and lifeboat assessed the situation once on scene and advised the coastguard that the best course of action would be to airlift the girls from the base of the cliffs. The rescue helicopter from RAF Chivenor was scrambled and airlifted the four to the cliff top, where they were given suitable safety advice before being repatriated with their parents.
This incident follows a very similar one on Wednesday when three 15-year-old boys were airlifted from the cliffs AT Jenny’s Gut after becoming stuck and attempting to climb the cliffs.
Swansea Coastguard Watch Manager David Jones says:
“Before you set out for the coast always check the weather and tidal conditions so that you can prepare accordingly. Consider whether you could become cut off and do not take risks and use cliffs as a short cut. Dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard if you are in danger.”

BRIXHAM COASTGUARD COORDINATE RESCUE OF MAN FROM CLIFF AFTER BARKING DOG ALERTS SAILING VESSEL

A man sustained serious head injuries and his wife was also superficially injured after falling down cliffs whilst out walking their dogs today.
Brixham Coastguard received a call from the sailing vessel ‘Four Sons’ at 12.15 today to report that a man had sustained serious injuries after falling down cliffs at Torbay. The vessel had been alerted to the man’s predicament by a springer spaniel which was barking and running up and down the cliffs. The coastguard requested the Torbay RNLI Inshore lifeboat to launch and requested the Torbay Coastguard Rescue Team to attend. Ambulance paramedics also went to the scene.
The coastguard rescue team assessed the man and put him into a neck brace, whilst awaiting arrival of the paramedics. A decision was then made that the best course of action would be to put the man onto a stretcher and take him back to shore using the lifeboat. The man (aged 53) and woman (aged 46) were then taken  to Torbay Hospital.
Fiona Iris, Brixham Coastguard Watch Manager says:
“It seems that the man and woman were out walking the spaniel and a terrier when the dogs went down the cliff. The two people scrambled down the cliffs after the dogs and the man then slipped and fell, sustaining a serious head injury. The terrier was taken in the lifeboat with the man and woman, whilst the spaniel was rescued from the cliffs by the coastguard team.
If you are out walking by cliffs with your dog keep it on a lead. Don't attempt to self rescue a dog which has gone over a cliff.  Call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.


LONDON COASTGUARD COORDINATE SEARCH FOR MISSING KAYAKER

London Coastguard have been coordinating the search for a missing kayaker this afternoon, after his upturned boat and oars were spotted by a member of the public at the Hammerton’s ferry at 12.30 pm this afternoon.

London Coastguard requested the Teddington RNLI lifeboat to launch and this was shortly followed by the other Teddington RNLI lifeboat. The Chiswick RNLI Lifeboat also joined the search later. The Police helicopter carried out a search and Police on foot are also undertaking  a shorebased search. The Port of London Authority harbour launch and other vessels also joined the search. The search is ongoing at this time.

Bob Forbes, London Coastguard Watch Manager says:
"We have been carrying out an intensive search of the River Thames in the Eel Pie Island to Richmond area for a couple of hours now but sadly we have not been able to find any sign of the missing kayaker yet. He was not wearing a buoyancy aid."

Saturday, 30 July 2011

USE CORRECT RADIO PROCEDURES WHILST AT SEA SAY SWANSEA COASTGUARD

Swansea Coastguard are asking sailors and motorboaters to familiarise themselves with correct radio procedures after a series of incidents where boaters have made incorrect broadcasts leading to needless delays and lifeboat launches.
“Throughout this week we have dealt with a number of incidents where people have made the incorrect broadcasts, hampering us in our ability to assist them,” says Dave Jones, Swansea Coastguard Watch Manager.
“On Tuesday, a vessel broadcast ‘mayday’, meaning that it was ‘in grave and imminent danger’.  The vessel said that they were taking on water. We requested the Horton RNLI inshore lifeboat and the Mumbles all weather lifeboat to launch and another nearby vessel also offered its assistance and went to the boat’s aid. However, upon further investigation we discovered that the water that was onboard the vessel had been there for some time and so they remained at sea.
“The next day, another vessel broadcast ‘mayday’, but held down the broadcast button, blocking us from making any further transmissions.  Within the broadcast they told us that they had engine failure, and so fearing the worst, we requested the Minehead  RNLI lifeboat to launch. However, when the lifeboat arrived it found the vessel at anchor and needing a tow. This would not be cause for a mayday broadcast and we could perhaps have arranged a tow by another vessel, rather than requesting a lifeboat to launch.
“I am, however, pleased to report that today two vessels have followed all of the correct procedures. Neither of the incidents have involved people being in ‘grave and imminent danger’ and so both vessels have made ‘pan pan’ (urgency) broadcasts. Both involved engine failure, with the first being towed back into Watchet and the second into Uphill by Weston Supermare lifeboat (since there was concern about smoke coming from the engine).
“Please do make sure that you broadcast the right message in the correct way using VHF radio. If you can use VHF DSC this is ideal since you can broadcast with one push of a button, and if your radio is wired up to GPS, we will also be sent your location. Correct radio procedures are taught on a number of courses. You may also like to order a sticker which you can put next to your radio. You can do this via this link: http://mca.ecgroup.net/Publications/Navigationandcommunication%C2%A0/Navigationandcommunication%C2%A0.aspx

MOTORBOATERS RESCUED FOLLOWING FAINT BROADCAST

Three people whose motorboat ‘Mi Amigo’ had started to sink off Skokholm Island, Pembrokeshire were rescued this afternoon after broadcasting an ‘urgency ‘ broadcast.
Milford Haven Coastguard heard a faint pan pan (urgency) broadcast from the motorboat ‘Mi Amigo’ at 4.10 pm this afternoon. The vessel had started to take water through its drive shaft and needed urgent assistance. The Coastguard requested the Angle and St Davids RNLI lifeboats to launch and re-broadcast the pan pan message to which other vessels in the area, including the ferry ‘Isle of Inishmore’ responded.  Although the only position given was ‘south of Skokholm Island’ the vessel was located after a short while, very low in the water, east of Skokholm Island. The Angle Lifeboat put its pumps on board the vessel so that the excess water could be pumped off and the vessel was towed back into Angle by the lifeboat.
Acting Watch Manager Barry Skidmore says:
“The broadcast was very faint and we only picked it up once in amongst all the other traffic on a busy Saturday afternoon. However, when we listened back to it we could hear that it definitely was a request for assistance and so we requested lifeboats and other vessels to search for it. Luckily for the three people involved we were able to locate the vessel reasonably quickly despite the imprecise location given.
“We recommend that those setting to sea invest in a VHF DSC radio and know how to use it. DSC can be used to call for assistance with one push of a button. And provided that it is linked into your vessel’s GPS it will automatically give the coastguard your precise position. Remember to tell someone at home where you are going and when you expect to return so that they can raise the alarm if you do not return as expected.”

MAN EXTRACTED FROM RAVINE BY COASTGUARDS FOLLOWING TOMBSTONING INCIDENT

A young man has been extracted from a ravine by coastguards and taken to hospital by air ambulance after a tombstoning jump went wrong.

Aberdeen Coastguard were contacted by the police at 6.00 pm this evening to request assistance for a man in his early twenties who they suspected had jumped off of a bridge into a ravine on the River Glascarnoch near Garve, 20 miles north-west of Inverness and broken both his ankles. Ambulance paramedics had already made an initial assessment of the scene and, due to the terrain, requested coastguard assistance.

Aberdeen Coastguard scrambled the coastguard helicopter form Stornoway and requested coastguard teams from Inverness, Portmahomack and Dornoch to attend the scene. When the coastguards arrived, they set up their rope equipment and scaled down the side of the ravine to the  man.  He was put on a spinal board on a special flat based dinghy and floated down the river, then transferred onto the awaiting air ambulance and airlifted to Raigmore Hospital in Inverness.

Aberdeen Coastguard Watch Manager, Kevin Brown says:
“Jumping from bridges, piers, cliffs or other structures into water can be very dangerous. You do not know what lurks under the surface and the depth of tidal waters changes considerably. If you want to jump from height into water, you may wish to join a coasteering trip with a reputable adventure centre or go to a swimming pool where there are diving boards. In the past six years there have been 16 deaths and 50 serious injuries caused by tombstoning.”

THREE ANGLERS RESCUED FROM SEA NEAR RIVER AXE MOUTH

This morning at 6.00 am the angling vessel ‘Sam’, from Beer, came across three people in the water and a sinking 16ft sports angling boat. The three had been out on a fishing expedition near the River Axe mouth, when their vessel had overturned and begun to sink. The crew of ‘Sam’ recovered the casualties from the water who were cold and wet but unharmed.

It was only by chance that the angling vessel ‘Sam’ was in the area and had spotted the survivors. The angling boat had capsized at speed and the three men on board had been thrown into the water with no warning. Their lifejackets were safely stowed back at home and so were of no use to them.

The angling boat has now sunk off Seaton and may be salvaged later.

Portland Coastguard Watch Officer Roger Hoare says:
“These three men are extremely lucky to be alive after making such a basic error as leaving their lifejackets at home. If the angling vessel ‘Sam’ had not been passing at that moment their chances of survival could have been limited. A lifejacket is useless unless you wear it.”
“The men also did not have any means of communication with them, other than mobile phones, which are useless when wet, can easily fall out of pockets and are extremely unreliable on the water. Anglers on small boats can take a portable VHF radio with them which allows them to contact other water users as well as the coastguard in an emergency. A mobile phone inside a sealed plastic bag is a good back up.”

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

THREE BOYS GET INTO DANGER CLIMBING CLIFFS

Three teenage boys got into difficulty after climbing 155 foot cliff at Ginnys Gut, Langland this evening.

Swansea Coastguard received a ‘999’ call from one of the three boys at . The boy had made it to the top of the cliff, but his two friends were in difficulty, one was stuck 15 foot up the cliff and the other was at the foot of the cliff.

Coastguard Rescue Officers from Mumbles and Rhossili were sent to the scene and the RNLI Mumbles Inshore Lifeboat was requested to launch. Rescue helicopter 169 from RAF Chivenor was scrambled and the South Wales Police were in attendance.

Bernie Kemble, Watch Officer, Swansea Coastguard, said:

“The Rescue Helicopter rescued the 15 year old boy from the cliff at Ginnys Gut, Langland, after he became stuck whilst attempting to climb up the cliff from the beach. A second 15 year old boy was rescued from the base of the cliff by lifeboat crew. All three boys are now safe and well.

We would like to remind visitors to the coast to always check the weather and tidal conditions before you set out so that you can prepare accordingly. Consider whether you could become cut off and do not take risks and use cliffs as a short cut. Dial ‘999’ and ask for the Coastguard if you are in danger.”

Notes to Editors

1. Stay safe - before heading out on the water get trained, check weather and tides, wear a lifejacket, avoid alcohol and keep in touch

2. Follow us on Twitter. Find us at MCA_media

For further details contact:
The Maritime & Coastguard Agency Duty Press Officer
Office hours: 023 8032 9401
Mobile: 07764 624 505

DANGERS OF INFLATABLE DINGHIES IN OPEN WATER

                                                                                                                
A search took place this evening for two young girls in an inflatable dinghy, off Sandgreen, Gatehouse Of Fleet (Dumfries and Galloway).

Liverpool Coastguard received a call from the mother of one of the two girls just after , she was concerned for the safety of the two girls as she had not seen them for at least an hour.

Liverpool Coastguard sent the Kirkcudbright Coastguard Rescue Team to the scene and requested the launch of the Fleet Bay Independent Rescue Boat, Port William Independent Lifeboat and the RNLI  Kirkcudbright Inshore Lifeboat. A rescue helicopter from RAF Valley was scrambled and the Solway Coastguard Sector Manager was sent to the scene.

Paul Parkes, Watch Manager, Liverpool Coastguard, said:

“I am pleased to say the two girls were found safe and well, but had drifted a mile from their original destination and were found by a canoeist who assisted them with a tow until the Fleet Bay Independent Rescue Boat arrived on scene and took them back to Sand Green.

We would like to remind the public that inflatable toy boats can easily be blown out to sea; if you do use them always ensure they are tethered to an adult who is standing at the water’s edge with them. Inflatable boats and toys must not be used in an offshore wind. If people do find themselves being swept out to sea on an inflatable boat or toy, we advise you to stay with the boat or toy and shout for help, waving arms if possible. Do not attempt to swim for shore if out of your depth.”

Notes to Editors

1. Stay safe - before heading out on the water get trained, check weather and tides, wear a lifejacket, avoid alcohol and keep in touch

2. Follow us on Twitter. Find us at MCA_media

For further details contact:
The Maritime & Coastguard Agency Duty Press Officer
Office hours: 023 8032 9401
Mobile: 07764 624 505
Press releases and further information about the Agency is available on the Web at www.mcga.gov.uk

INJURED MAN FOUND AND RESCUED FROM MOURNE MOUNTAINS

A man has been rescued from the Mourne after falling and sustaining serious leg, head and hand injuries. Mountains
  
Belfast Coastguard received a call from Police at this afternoon reporting that a man had fallen about 150 feet near Eagle Rocks in the Mourne and sustained serious injuries. The Police air support helicopter and the Mourne Mountain Rescue Team were sent to the scene by the police whilst Belfast Coastguard placed an ambulance on standby. Mountains
  
Belfast Coastguard requested the Dublin Coastguard helicopter to scramble and kept the man on the phone, trying to direct rescuers towards him, and reassuring him that help was on its way. After two hours of searching, the search area was gradually narrowed down, until eventually the mountain rescue team were able to locate the man. The mountain rescue team administered first aid and prepared the man ready for airlift to the Royal by coastguard helicopter, where the Bangor Coastguard Rescue Team manned the landing site. Victoria Hospital
  
Steve Carson, Belfast Coastguard Watch Manager says:
  
"We were very concerned for this man’s health as he was quite obviously seriously injured and in a lot of pain. However, it was very difficult to locate him since he was dressed in khaki and grey so was very well camouflaged against the mountains. We knew that we were searching in the right area as we could hear the helicopters in the background on the phone. Unfortunately, all the man could do to draw attention to himself was to wave a yellow water bottle in the air with his good hand. It was therefore a relief when we were able to narrow down the search area, and the mountain rescue team were finally able to locate him.
  
This was a complex multi agency incident with the skills of the Mourne Mountain Rescue team and the Helicopter crews playing a pivotal role in the outcome.

"The Mourne are popular for walking and other outdoor pursuits. The man had been out with a group of friends when they had become separated and he had fallen.” Mountains

Sunday, 17 July 2011

12 YEAR OLD IN KAYAK RAISES THE ALARM OFF TENBY

A 12-year-old boy phoned the Coastguard to ask for help this afternoon after getting into difficulty when paddling in a kayak off Giltar Point near Tenby.  The 12-year-old and a friend were paddling in the kayak, being pushed by his father when the weather changed and they began being swept out to sea.
At 2.38 pm the boy called Milford Haven Coastguard to report that he and his friend (also 12-years-old) had been being pushed around in the kayak by his father, but that they were being swept out by the tide and were in need of help.  Milford Haven Coastguard sent the Tenby RNLI inshore lifeboat to the scene, along with tasking the Tenby Coastguard Rescue Team and informing the RNLI Lifeguards.  They also made a broadcast to any vessels in the area that might be able to offer assistance.  A local fishing vessel, the ‘Stephen William’ answered the broadcast immediately, locating the group within a minute and bringing them as close to the shore as possible, where they were brought onto the beach by RNLI Lifeguards.  The coastguard rescue team then checked them over and assessed that they did not require medical attention.
Milford Haven Watch Manager Barry Skidmore said:
"We were very impressed with the calm, informative call made by the 12-year-old boy when he phoned for help.  He did absolutely the right thing by calling the Coastguard when they got into difficulty, and the group had followed safety advice by wearing lifejackets and taking a mobile phone which allowed them to raise the alarm.  We would also like to thank the crew of the ‘Stephen William’ who responded immediately to our broadcast.  Their quick response ensured the group were not swept out any further and were brought ashore safely within minutes of their call for assistance.”

DIVER DIES AFTER SURFACING UNCONSCIOUS OFF SEAHOUSES

A female diver has been declared dead at Wansbeck Hospital after surfacing unconscious during a dive off Seahouses this afternoon.

The dive boat that the woman had been diving from contacted Humber Coastguard at 12.38 pm to report that the diver had fallen unconscious whilst surfacing from a dive.
 
Humber Coastguard requested the dive boat bring the diver to the shore, to be met by the Seahouses Coastguard Rescue Team and an ambulance.  In the meantime, the Coastguard organised a link call between the dive boat and the Institute of Naval Medicine, who recommended that the casualty be taken straight to the nearest Accident and Emergency department.  The crew of the Rescue Helicopter from RAF Boulmer heard the communications and offered to transfer the casualty as they were nearby attending another incident.  The Rescue Helicopter then airlifted the casualty to Wansbeck Hospital, where the woman was declared deceased.

Saturday, 16 July 2011

EIGHT PEOPLE RESCUED FROM CLIFFS AT BREAN DOWN

Eight people were rescued from the cliffs at Brean Down this evening after they became cut off by the incoming tide, tried to climb up the cliffs to safety and then became stuck.

The group – made up of five children and three adults – raised the alarm at 7.15 pm by calling Swansea Coastguard to report that they had become stuck on the cliffs at Brean Down, near Burnham-On-Sea.

Swansea Coastguard sent a rescue helicopter from RAF Chivenor, the Burnham-On-Sea Coastguard Rescue Team and two RNLI lifeboats to the rescue of the group.  At 7.42 pm the team located the stranded group, and the rescue helicopter winched all eight into the helicopter and took them to a nearby field where they were met by the coastguard rescue team.

After transferring the group to safety, the helicopter was then tasked by Swansea Coastguard onto reports of a man that had fallen into Ilfracombe Harbour.  He was helped ashore by a member of the public and met by paramedics and the Ilfracombe Coastguard Rescue Team.

Swansea Coastguard Watch Manager David Hughes said:
“If you are going out for a walk along the coast always prepare by checking the tide times and wearing appropriate clothing and footwear.  If you find yourself in difficulty, always dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard.”

Thursday, 14 July 2011

CLIMBER AND WALKER AIRLIFTED TO HOSPITAL

A cliff climber who was hit by a boulder and fell down the 130 foot sheer rock face at St Govans Head was  rescued from the bottom of the cliffs by coastguard rescue teams and airlifted to hospital this evening.
The 28 year old woman was climbing the cliff face with a group when she was hit by a boulder and fell to the base of the cliffs. A man who was walking at the top of the cliffs heard her friends shouting for help and called 999 and asked for the coastguard at 8.30 pm. The member of the public spoke to Milford Haven Coastguard who requested the Tenby, St Govans and Castle Martin Coastguard Rescue Teams to attend the scene along with the South Pembs Coastguard Sector Manager.  The rescue helicopter from RAF Chivenor was also scrambled.
The coastguard rescue teams were guided to the scene by the member of the public who was standing at the top of the cliff. The teams set up their cliff gear and two coastguards descended the cliff and administered first aid. A paramedic joined them shortly afterwards, and following assessment of the injured climber the woman was stabilised and taken up the cliff then transferred onto the waiting helicopter.
At 9.30 pm Swansea Coastguard received a call from the Welsh ambulance service to request assistance for a 60-year-old woman who had sustained an open fracture of the leg at Pennard Burrows. Swansea Coastguard sent the Mumbles Coastguard Rescue Team to the woman’s aid and diverted the helicopter, which had just airlifted the climber at St Govans, to assist the woman. The Mumbles Coastguard Rescue Team cleared the site ready for the helicopter to land and assisted the helicopter paramedic with preparing the woman for airlifting. The 60-old-woman was then airlifted to Heath Hospital in Cardiff along with the climber.
Andrew Hodgson, Milford Haven Coastguard Watch Manager says:
“The member of the public was instrumental in enabling us to get help to the climber quickly by giving the teams good directions about where the woman had fallen. If you know that someone is in trouble along the coast call 999 and ask for the coastguard. Remember that you can call 999 even if you have no credit on your phone or if the phone is locked. Tell the coastguard what the problem is and where you are. You may need to stay on the line to direct us to the scene.
Bev Haigh, Swansea Coastguard Watch Manager says:
“We do not know how the woman sustained her injury, although we know that she had been walking around the old castle. We would like to remind members of the public to take care when walking at the coast and to wear appropriate footwear.”

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

MOTORCRUISER CALLS FOR HELP AFTER HITTING SUBMERGED OBJECT

 A motorcruiser with four people on board broadcast an urgent request for help this afternoon after the vessel struck a submerged object, north of Lundy Island.

The 32 foot motorcruiser ‘Estedor 2’ broadcast a pan-pan message which was picked up by Swansea Coastguard at 3.25 pm this afternoon. The coastguard re-broadcast the message to which a passenger vessel and a yacht responded, going to the motorcruiser’s assistance. The Estedor 2 had started to take on some water, although this was being pumped off by the vessel’s bilge pumps. The collision had also caused damage to the motorcruiser’s engines, so Swansea Coastguard requested the Appledore RNLI all weather lifeboat to launch to the vessel’s assistance. Once on scene, the lifeboat took the motorcruiser in tow to Appledore.

Bev Haigh, Swansea Coastguard Watch Manager says:

“All four of the people on board were wearing lifejackets and acted correctly in making a pan pan broadcast on VHF channel 16 as soon as the collision had happened.

“Remember that if you have VHF DSC radio equipment on board you can send a distress alert and an accurate position of your vessel to the coastguard with one touch of a button. You must then follow this up immediately with a broadcast on channel 16.”


MAN RESCUED AFTER ATTEMPTING TO CLIMB 600 FOOT CLIFFS TO ESCAPE INCOMING TIDE

A man has been rescued 100 feet from the top of 600 foot cliffs which he had climbed at Minehead Bluff, Somerset to escape the incoming tide.

The man called 999 and requested help from Swansea Coastguard at 6.00 pm this evening. He had been climbing up the cliff after becoming cut off by the tide and was stuck 100 feet from the top in thick bracken.

Swansea Coastguard requested the Minehead and Watchet Coastguard Rescue Teams and the Exmoor Coastguard Sector Manager to attend the scene. The rescue helicopter from RAF Chivenor was also scrambled.

The man was quickly located by the helicopter. All that could be seen of him was an arm waving from out of the bracken, since the man was dressed in combat clothing. He was winched from his position on the cliff into the care of the Minehead Coastguard Rescue Team. Other than being exhausted by his ordeal, the man was uninjured.

Bev Haigh, Swansea Coastguard Watch Manager says:

“If you become cut off by the tide, please do not attempt to climb cliffs, but call the coastguard immediately by ringing 999. Cliffs can be slippery or crumbly and one slip could be fatal.

Always check the weather and tidal conditions before you set out so that you can prepare accordingly. Consider whether you could become cut off and do not take risks.

Although this man did eventually call us when he realised his predicament, it would have been much safer to have just called us from the bottom. Climbing 600 feet up a cliff without equipment is a difficult and dangerous challenge.”

Monday, 11 July 2011

COASTGUARDS RESCUE THREE LADS CUT OFF BY TIDE ON CLIFF FACE


Three young men from the Manchester area were rescued by the Bembridge Coastguard Rescue Team yesterday after becoming stuck in three different places on the face of the high chalk cliffs at Culver Down, on the east side of the Isle of Wight.

The young men, aged 16, 17 and 18, were trying to travel round the headland from Whitecliffe Bay to Sandown Bay when the tide overtook their efforts and forced them to climb further up the cliffs. They had been advised locally that they could get all the way around the headland at low tide.

The youths called 999 at about 5.30 pm and spoke to Solent Coastguard who requested the Bembridge Coastguard Rescue Team  to search for, and rescue the three. The Bembridge RNLI lifeboat was also requested to launch. The young men were located, about 40 feet from the bottom of the cliffs. Two different coastguard rescue officers were then lowered down the 300-foot cliffs to rescue the teenagers from three different positions on the chalk face. All three were lowered into the lifeboat, then taken back to Bembridge Lifeboat Station. Other than a few cuts and bruises, they were none the worse for their ordeal.

Martin Groom, one of the two coastguards who rescued the teenagers said: “The three young men were in very tricky positions for us to get at, since they were spread along the cliffs and we needed to move along the chalk face for each one. They had naturally moved into the folds and gullies of the cliff where they were less likely to fall. This made it difficult to get in to them to put them into our harness.  However, our gear allows us to manoeuvre up and down independently allowing us to carry out the rescues”.

Bembridge Coastguard Station Officer Jim Roberts said:

“These three lads were fortunate that we were able to get to them quickly to rescue them. We were pleased that they did have the presence of mind to call 999 and ask for the coastguard when they realised that they needed help. Don’t forget that you can do this even if you have no credit on your phone or if the phone is locked. Tell the coastguard what the problem is and where you are. You may need to stay on the line to direct rescuers to the scene.

“If you are not sure of times for tides, do not take risks. Always check the weather and tidal conditions before you set out.”


Sunday, 10 July 2011

FOUR TEENAGERS RESCUED IN DUNDRUM BAY

At 6.00 pm yesterday, Belfast Coastguard received a 999 call from one of a party of four teenagers who were cut off by the tide and were up to their shoulders in water close to Ardilea, while walking from Ballykinler to Dundrum.
Belfast Coastguard immediately tasked Southdown Coastguard Rescue Team and requested the launch of the Newcastle RNLI Inshore Lifeboat. Northern Ireland Ambulance Service also responded to the incident.
Whilst search and rescue units were proceeding to the incident, a gentleman who has formally served as a volunteer Coastguard and lives nearby assisted in the rescue. He managed to get his dinghy into the water and get to the teenagers who were showing signs of hypothermia and were complaining of the cold.
After recovering all four teenagers with his dinghy, he made shore to be met by members of Southdown Coastguard Rescue Team and NI Ambulance Service paramedics. The four were transported to hospital by two ambulances for further assessment.
Gary Young, Watch manager, Belfast Coastguard said:
These teenagers are extremely lucky to have been rescued this evening.  I would like to pay tribute to the quick thinking of a former Coastguard who’s actions certainly made for a happy ending to this potentially life threatening incident.  Southdown CRT also showed their professionalism throughout this incident which was co-ordinated by MRCC Belfast.
We would like to remind anyone visiting the coast to take great care near water.  Do not put yourselves at risk and if you find yourselves in trouble, dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard.

Saturday, 9 July 2011

TWO BOYS RESCUED OFF CLIFFS AT WHITLEY BAY

At 12.50pm, Humber MRCC received a report from Blyth Coastguard Rescue Team that two young boys, aged 9 and 11 had become stuck on the cliffs at Whitley Bay.

Blyth Coastguard were on a routine patrol at the time, and had intercepted a call from the RNLI beach lifeguards, who were calling Humber Coastguard to alert them to the incident.

Humber Coastguard immediately tasked Blyth Coastguard rescue team to assist, and also called on the Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade to attend the incident.

Once these resources arrived on scene, it was clear that the boys were indeed in danger, so much so that one of the RNLI lifeguards attempted to rescue the boys himself. He had then become trapped in a difficult position. From the position they were in, they faced a 30 foot drop.

Rescue Helicopter 131 from RAF Boulmer, who was also training in the area was called to assist with the rescue.

The two boys were eventually rescued by the Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade, and lowered safely to the beach, where they were checked over by ambulance paramedics, before being taken home by the police.

The RNLI lifeguard was taken off the cliffs by the helicopter and lowered to the beach.

Mike Puplett, Watch Manager, Humber Coastguard said:

These 2 young boys have been lucky today. The weather conditions, in particular the gusting winds made this a difficult and dangerous scenario for both the boys and the rescue personnel.

Once again people have become unnecessarily trapped on the cliffs. We understand that youngsters have a sense of adventure, but fences around cliff edges are there for a reason. I would like to thank all the people involved in the rescue, and in particular the Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade, who as always provided a first class response.

TWO BOYS RESCUED OFF CLIFFS AT WHITLEY BAY

At 12.50pm, Humber MRCC received a report from Blyth Coastguard Rescue Team that two young boys, aged 9 and 11 had become stuck on the cliffs at Whitley Bay.

Blyth Coastguard were on a routine patrol at the time, and had intercepted a call from the RNLI beach lifeguards, who were calling Humber Coastguard to alert them to the incident.

Humber Coastguard immediately tasked Blyth Coastguard rescue team to assist, and also called on the Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade to attend the incident.

Once these resources arrived on scene, it was clear that the boys were indeed in danger, so much so that one of the RNLI lifeguards attempted to rescue the boys himself. He had then become trapped in a difficult position. From the position they were in, they faced a 30 foot drop.

Rescue Helicopter 131 from RAF Boulmer, who was also training in the area was called to assist with the rescue.

The two boys were eventually rescued by the Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade, and lowered safely to the beach, where they were checked over by ambulance paramedics, before being taken home by the police.

The RNLI lifeguard was taken off the cliffs by the helicopter and lowered to the beach.

Mike Puplett, Watch Manager, Humber Coastguard said:

These 2 young boys have been lucky today. The weather conditions, in particular the gusting winds made this a difficult and dangerous scenario for both the boys and the rescue personnel.

Once again people have become unnecessarily trapped on the cliffs. We understand that youngsters have a sense of adventure, but fences around cliff edges are there for a reason. I would like to thank all the people involved in the rescue, and in particular the Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade, who as always provided a first class response.

CHILDREN RESCUED FROM ROCKS

At 10.20 pm yesterday evening, Belfast Coastguard received a 999 call from a man reporting, two children cut off on the rocks at Cove Bay, Groomsport.

Belfast Coastguard called out the Bangor Coastguard rescue team and requested the launch of the Bangor RNLI inshore lifeboat.

When the Coastguard team arrived they were able to assist one of the girls to safety, whilst the second girl was recovered by the lifeboat.

The girls were taken back to the lifeboat station where they were collected by their parents.

Alan Pritchard, Watch Manager, Belfast Coastguard said:

Our coastline is a wonderful and exciting environment for all ages but can sometimes have hidden dangers which may not be so obvious to small children on their own.

Thankfully, someone heard the girls call for help and called for the emergency services.

If you see anyone in trouble at the coast or on the sea, dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard.

Friday, 8 July 2011

UK FLAG REACHES 18 MILLION GROSS TONNES

In June the UK Flag passed the 18 million gross tonnes (GT) mark for the first time since 1983.

The UK Flag has grown approximately 165% since 2001, having now reached the 18 million GT mark. During the 1980’s and 1990’s the UK Flag went through a period of decline, falling as low as 4 million GT.  Since 2001 the UK Flag has made a tremendous recovery.

So far during 2011 there have been 58 new ship registrations with a combined gross tonnage of 2 million GT.  Of these new registrations 42 were new builds, whilst the remainder transferred in from other flags.  The average age of vessels flagging-in so far this year is 4 years, whilst the average age of vessels leaving the register is 16.

Recently appointed Head of UKSR, Debasis Mazumdar said:

“I am extremely pleased that the UK Ship Register has reached the 18 million GT mark.  However, it is important that this growth continues with quality owners and quality ships in the future, and it is certainly our aspiration to do so.  The UK Flag has recently moved up to 4th place on the Paris MoU White List and has also regained its Qualship 21 status.  These achievements highlight our commitment to quality as well as growth for the UK Fleet.”

A recent addition to the UK Flag that has contributed to this growth is the ‘Freja Andromeda’, an oil/chemical Tanker owned by Lauritzen Tankers A/S and technically managed by Wallem Shipmanagement Hong Kong.  This ship joined the UK Ship Register on 5 May 2011.  This is the second new build tanker, following ‘Freya Pegasus’ (Oct 2010) and, more recently, ‘Freja Taurus’ (June 2011) to join the UK Ship Register.

All were constructed in Guangzhou Shipyard, China and the ship building and registration went smoothly thanks to excellent teamwork between the Customer Service Manager, Customer Account Manager, lead surveyor and vessel interests.

At the end of June 2011 the UK Ship Register stands at 1,486 ships with a gross tonnage of 18,054,301.  The UK is the eleventh largest merchant fleet in the world.

YACHT CREW RESCUED OFF ISLES OF SCILLY

Two Dutch crew from a yacht have been rescued in gale force conditions overnight, 75 miles South West of the Isles Of Scilly.

At on Thursday Falmouth Coastguard received an EPIRB (Emergency Positioning Radio Beacon) distress alert located 75 miles South West of the Isles Of Scilly, which they determined was registered to a Swedish 36 foot yacht called Andriette. 

Falmouth Coastguard contacted merchant vessels in the area and a message was relayed from another yacht which had encountered the Andriette on Wednesday and reported that she had suffered some damage but had continued on her passage from the Azores to Malmo in Sweden.

The Rescue Helicopter from RNAS Culdrose located the damaged yacht at which was without steering, lying stern to the wind in heavy seas. With winching over the deck impossible in the conditions, the two men on board had to abandon to their liferaft.  The winchman retrieved one man from the liferaft but the liferaft capsized and on returning for the second man, both winchman and crewman were out of sight in the water beneath the upturned raft.  Thankfully, when the liferaft righted itself the winchman had located the man in the water and both were winched back to the safety of the helicopter.

The two men are Dutch nationals aged 41 and 54. They were cold and wet after their ordeal but uninjured and have been transferred to Falmouth.  


Falmouth Coastguard Watch Manager Peter Bullard said,

“The conditions for the helicopter rescue crew were extremely challenging with gale force winds, rough seas and darkness.  The three merchant vessels which responded to us helped with communications and were always an option for rescue.  However, transfer either to helicopter or a vessel would always be difficult under these conditions.”



-Ends-
 Notes to Editors

1.      Carrying a VHF radio on your vessel is vital and VHF DSC (Digital Selective Calling) is strongly recommended. Ensure your radio equipment is fully working and you know what to do in an emergency. With DSC you can send a distress alert along with your exact position, with one touch of the button. The distress alert  is repeated every four minutes until it is acknowledged either by a Coastguard Station (Ship to Shore) or by a vessel (Ship to Ship) within radio range.
  1. Maritime Mobile Service Identity (MMSI) numbers are programmed into a DSC radio set and an MMSI is issued as part of your radio licence application, via Ofcom. It consists of a series of nine digits, which are used to uniquely identify the radio on your vessel.

  1. The MCA is a partner in the Sea Vision UK campaign to raise awareness and understanding of the sea and maritime activities.  Sea Vision promotes the importance and economic value of the sector and works to highlight the exciting range of activities and career opportunities available to young people within the UK growing maritime sector. www.seavisionuk.org

  1. Stay safe - before heading out on the water get trained, check weather and tides, wear a lifejacket, avoid alcohol and keep in touch

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