Thanet RNLI Community Safety

Lifejackets, useless unless worn!

 

This blog post is all about urging all water activity users to wear lifejackets or personal bouyancy aids.  You may have read about the rescue recently undertaken by Whitstable’s Inshore Lifeboat, with the help of Margate’s All Weather Lifeboat.  The full report of the rescue can be found by visiting Whitstable Station’s website page.

The two gentlemen who were rescued by the Inshore Lifeboat crew had been in the water for two and a half hours, hanging onto their up-turned craft. Luckily, the position of the dingy was easily found thanks to a passing yacht.  It is imperative to wear a lifejacket whenever you go out onto the water and carry a means of calling for help. You can find out all sorts of top-tips on how to look after your lifejacket by checking out one of our previous blog posts or going to the RNLI website.  RNLI Community Safety teams around the coast run lifejacket clinics, to check over jackets and to advise sailers/yatchtsmen/anglers on whether they need attention or maintenance.

If you are wondering whether your lifejacket is ok to use, then why not have a look at this top tips blog. If you are still unsure then pop our team a quick message and we will be happy to advise. In the case of the two gentlemen rescued recently, they were very lucky. On another day, with no passing craft and more severe weather conditions the outcome could have been a whole lot worse. So, if you are an angler, yachtsmen/women, sailer, kaycker, canoeist or fishermen please wear your lifejacket when you are on the water and carry a means of calling for help. You should be checking your lifejacket at least once a year, by following our top tips check list. If you are unsure there are a whole host of companies that will service your lifejacket for you.

More information on calling for help devices for kayckers

How to Call for Help

Float Not Swim – RNLI campaign

Water Savy Day – Bewl Water, Tunbridge Wells

Our Respect the Water stand – all set up at the Water Savy Day

On Saturday 16th June, saw me travel up to Bewl Water, near to Tunbridge Wells for the Kent Fire & Rescue Service’s Water Savy Day in partnership with East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service. This event is the first of it’s kind and I was very excited to be attending especially as I was representing the RNLI to share our key safety messages, along with a host of other water safety partners. Although Bewl Water is some fifty miles away from the coast, it was a unique opportunity to take part in such an innovative and exciting day, targeting all facets of water safety. The drive to Bewl Water is a fantastic cross country trip.  Taking in a variety of of lovely Kent villages and towns, which make up a large chunk of the Garden of England. Bewl Water is a fabulous location to visit at any time of the year, with a whole host of activities on offer including: mountain biking, sailing, and walking amongst others. It was also a superb location to host this Water Savy day, with breath taking views across the lake and brilliant woods to take a stroll or cycle around.

Fire & Rescue Water Rescue Teams at the ready before their inter service challenge

The Water Savy day comprised a range of demonstrations using specialist units, including a mock horse rescue from a ditch or mud hole using a hydraulic hoist, live water rescues from the lake, hands-on throw bag training, Inter Fire Service water rescue competition (won by Kent FRS), meet the Fire Search dog ‘Boz’, CPR demonstrations from the RLSS, Newfoundland dog’s were put through their paces in a mock water rescue and a chat on the microphone from myself about ‘float not swim’ and our ‘Respect the Water’ campaign.

Kent Fire Search Dog – Boz!

Overall a fantastic day chatting to a great range of visitors enjoying the day’s sunshine and learning all about water safety, both at the coast and inland. To all the lovely visitors, thank you for taking the time to visit and I hope you had a really great day, we did!

Photo acknowledgements where appropriate to Kent Fire & Rescue Service; and East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service.  Thank you to Kirsty Geary from Kent Fire & Rescue Service for inviting us along, it was much appreciated.

More information on the Drowning Prevention Week

Respect the Water guide (Float Not Swim)

Kent Search and Rescue Service

RLSS – ‘Don’t Drink and Drown’ campaign

Bewl Water

 

 

Volvo Ocean Race Cardiff

RNLI Safety stand at the Volvo Ocean village, Cardiff Bay

Apologies for not posting last week, but I was over in the lovely city of Cardiff. You may wonder how an RNLI Community Safety Officer covering East Kent ended up in Cardiff?  Well, Cardiff was the venue for Volvo Ocean Race. This race fleet started last October from Alicante in Spain on a race around the world, taking in 12 cities. For the very first time in its history the race stopped off in Cardiff between 27th May to 10th June. This year, Wales is celebrating the Year of the Sea – the RNLI were selected as host city community partners for the Cardiff stopover. That is where I came in, by volunteering to help staff the RNLI stand in the ocean village in Cardiff Bay, to share our key safety messages amongst sailers and other visitors.

Mapfre -Spanish team boat returning to Cardiff Bay

It was great to meet lots of visitors to chat to about the RNLI’s safety tips. Find out more about sailing top tips by visiting this link. It was also fabulous to meet the awesome RNLI volunteers and staff from across the UK, putting faces to names who I had corresponded with via email or chatted to on social media. It was an absolute privilege and I am very proud to be involved in such an event and I can’t wait for the next opportunity to represent the RNLI.

Guests of Helly Hansen being briefed prior to their trip round a Tamar All Weather Lifeboat

My top 6 links about the exciting Ocean Volvo race:

  1.  Volvo Ocean Race Cardiff
  2.  Turn The Tide On Plastic – find out more about Dee Caffari’s race crew and how this veteran world sailer is launching a campaing to Turn the Tide on Plastic.
  3.  Dee Caffari website
  4.  RNLI Magazine article on the Volvo Ocean event
  5.  Follow the latest daily digest on the Ocean Volvo race news
  6.  Keep abreast of the action by following the Ocean Volvo race tracker

Sky Ocean Plastic giant whale

Sky Ocean Plastic #PassOnplastic

 

 

 

 

9 people assisted by Margate Inshore Lifeboat after being cut off by the tide
Margate’s Inshore Lifeboat

On Saturday lunchtime, just as the sunny weekend weather and high temperatures was attracting a multitude of visitors onto the lovely Thanet sandy beaches, Margate Lifeboat crews pagers were activated by the UK Coastguard. Requesting them to launch their Inshore Lifeboat (ILB) to three people cut off by the tide at Kingsgate Bay. Quickly arriving on scene the crew carried out the rescue of a London couple who were celebrating their 1st wedding anniversary, along with a photographer who was busy capturing the moment. After successfully completing the rescue, with the couple and photographer only having wet feet to show and being handed over to the care of the Coastguard Rescue Team, the Lifeboat crew then resumed back towards Margate.

Two women were then spotted in a similar area by the Inshore Lifeboat Crew and had walked down a nearby track and were attempting to wade through the water back towards the beach. The Lifeboat Crew advised the two women to return back the way they had walked, they heeded the advice and turned back.

A further two more persons were seen cut-off by the tide, they were taken off the rocks at which point two more adults and two children were also seen. They too were rescued off the rocks by the ILB crew. The casualties were then taken to Botany Bay where the casualties were handed over into the care of the RNLI Lifeguards and HM Coastguard Rescue Team.

Ian Lowe Deputy Luanching Authority Margate Lifeboat said; “To assist nine persons in such a short time in one area shows how easy it is to get into trouble by the water. It was a lovely day to be at the seaside, but not knowing what the tide will do leading to, an unintended spell in the water can spell disaster. The water is still cold, cold water shock can kill the unprepared long before or bring on drowning. Please seek advice before visiting the seaside from the RNLI website and use a lifeguarded beach. Lifeguards know the dangers in the area and will always give advice if asked.”

Acknowledgements to Margate RNLI Lifeboat Press Officer & DLA Ian Lowe

RNLI Advice on tides

HM Coastguard Coastal Safety advice

Tides information

Find my nearest RNLI Lifeguarded beach

Previous blog post on tides and coastal safety