Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Search for missing sailor off Lizard - update

A search for a missing yachtsman who was travelling from the Azores to Falmouth was suspended yesterday evening after a person was found in the water during a search between the Lizard and Coverack. The person was taken to hospital in a very serious condition.

The alarm was raised with the UK Coastguard at 13.45 yesterday (3rd August 2015) after another vessel discovered the 50ft  yacht with its sails up and no-one on board.

Lizard and Falmouth RNLI all weather lifeboats, Falmouth RNLI inshore lifeboat, a rescue helicopter from RNAS Culdrose, the Porthoustock Coastguard Rescue Team and locals yachts searched an area north-east of The Lizard after the yacht was discovered unmanned and going around in circles.

Devon and Cornwall police today confirmed the man, who was taken to Treliske Hospital,  was pronounced deceased.
The man is aged 68 and from Yorkshire. It is believed he was the only person aboard the yacht. Next of kin have been informed. The death is not being treated as suspicious but police enquiries continue as to how the man came to be in the water. The Marine Accident Investigation Branch has been informed.

Sunday, 2 August 2015

Five rescued following large search in the Solent

A large search focused in the central Solent, was sparked earlier today (2nd August) after the UK Coastguard received a 999 call from a small leisure craft boat.

The vessel which had five people on board, had suffered engine failure and because of the weather conditions, began taking in water.

No-one onboard was able to provide a clear position, which was partly a result of having no positioning equipment or navigational aids.

Independent lifeboats from Gosport, Hamble and Ryde, along with the Portsmouth RNLI lifeboat conducted a search through the central Solent. The Coastguard Rescue Helicopter based at Lee on Solent began an initial search and was spotted by the vessel which meant its location could then be determined.

It was then found by both the lifeboats and the helicopter and all onboard were transferred to Hamble lifeboat where the paramedic from the Coastguard helicopter carried out initial medical assessments.

They were then taken to Lee on Solent where they were met by Hill Head Coastguard Rescue Team and an ambulance. 

Steve Mann, Senior Maritime Operations Officer said, ‘If you’re going out to sea, make sure you’re properly prepared and that you have some way of being located if you get into difficulty.

‘VHF DSC sets are readily available. When you use them, we can then pinpoint your location and get to you more quickly.’

Sunday, 26 July 2015

Sailor rescued from Winchelsea Beach after running aground

A sailor was rescued from Winchelsea Beach this afternoon by the Rye Bay and Hastings Coastguard Rescue Teams after his vessel ran aground.

At 16:00 today the sailor informed the Coastguard that the engines on his newly purchased boat had failed and that he was taking on water. The RNLI inshore lifeboat based at Rye Bay and the RNLI all-weather lifeboat based at Hastings were sent to help him. Unfortunately the anchor of the Colvic motorboat failed to hold the boat in today’s rough seas and he was driven on to the beach from where the sailor was rescued. The 20ft boat is now secured to the beach.

UK Coastguard Frank O’Neill said;

“This sailor must regret his decision to move his new boat from Newhaven to Dover today. Unfortunately the weather was against him and it’s a timely reminder for us all to always check the weather and tidal conditions before you set out and prepare accordingly.

“Despite his bad luck with the engine he was well prepared and was able to make a call to ask for help. Without these preparations and a working vhf radio he may not have lived to tell the tale.”

Thursday, 23 July 2015

Two canoeists rescued from Beauly Firth

Just after 2 pm today UK Coastguard received a number of 999 calls from members of the public saying that they could see an upturned canoe and two people in the water at Beauly Firth, Inverness.

UK Coastguard immediately sent the Inverness Coastguard Rescue Team to the area along with the Kessock RNLI Lifeboat.
As the Coastguard Rescue Team arrived on the scene a member of the public had helped recover one of the canoeists to the shore. The remaining canoeist was brought ashore by the Kessock RNLI Lifeboat, both canoeists were placed into the care of waiting Ambulances.
The canoeists reported being in the water for nearly an hour, both were extremely cold and tired.
Jonathan Mustard, UK Coastguard said:
"The two canoeists were extremely lucky, thankfully they were wearing lifejackets and if it was not for a member of the public spotting them, we could be looking at a very different outcome."
"It's important that you check weather forecasts and tidal conditions and ensure that your skill levels are appropriate for where you are canoeing. It's always a good idea to carry a mobile phone in a waterproof bag and let someone know your passage plan. If possible I would recommend carrying a 406 Personal Locator Beacon especially if you are planning on visiting remote locations."

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Need help? Don’t phone a friend - call the professionals

If you need help out to sea or along the coast of the UK don’t phone a friend. Call the professionals, call 999 Coastguard.

HM Coastguard uses your mobile phone signal, vhf radio or DSC alert to confirm your location. Our Coastguard operators use the latest technology and a sequence of questions to establish exactly where you are and what help you need. We will then keep in touch with you until the help you need arrives.

So don’t phone a friend if you are in trouble around the UK coast. Call 999 and ask for the Coastguard and let the professionals help you.

Friday, 17 July 2015

Abandoned school uniform on beach sparks search

Hillhead Coastguard Rescue Team and two independent life-boats from Gosport were involved in a search operation this afternoon in the Lee-On Solent area following a report of clothes, including a school uniform and damp towels which had been left on the beach at Stokes Bay.
Teams searched the area for any sign of the owner of the clothes.
Dan Winter, UK Coastguard said,
"We didn’t know if or when this person may have gone into the water so we had to initialise a search effort. Fortunately, no one has been reported missing and it seems certain that this person is safe ashore somewhere.

Now the summer school holidays are here to avoid incidents like this in the future, we would ask all beachgoers to take their clothes home with them, or use the bins on the beach if they are no longer needed."

Thursday, 16 July 2015

Four people rescued from fishing vessel off Littlehampton

Four crew were rescued from the sea this afternoon after a fishing vessel sank off Littlehampton.

The blue fishing vessel set out a Mayday alert using vhf radio at 15:25. They reported that their boat was taking on water and their pumps were not coping. The RNLI lifeboats based in Littlehampton and Shoreham were sent to the scene along with the Coastguard Rescue Helicopter based at Lee on the Solent, which had been training in the area.

At 15:38 Coastguards coordinating the rescue received a mobile call from the crew reporting that their boat had now sunk and they were in the water, wearing lifejackets and holding on to a buoyant yellow fuel tank. Using mobile phone technology available to the Coastguard and its helicopters the helicopter crew were able to talk directly to the people in the water and marked their position until the lifeboats arrived on scene.

One of the lifeboats has now returned the crew to shore where they are receiving medical attention.

UK Coastguard Commander Steve Carson said:

“The crew did exactly the right thing and quickly called for help when they realised the situation was getting out of their control. The Coastguard recommend that where possible, all vessels are fitted with VHF DSC radio equipment which can send a distress alert and, if it is linked up to GPS, an accurate position of your vessel to the Coastguard with one touch of a button.

“This incident is another reminder why you should wear a lifejacket. I’m sure this crew were grateful for their protection whilst they waited to be rescued.”