Thanet RNLI Community Safety

Stormy Weather & Volunteers
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Margate All Weather Lifeboat Photo credit: Steve Burton

You couldn’t have failed to witness some of the extremely challenging weather conditions which have battered the UK in the past month. It was four years ago that I remember the last real bad weather to hit us at the coast. It just seemed to rain every day.

Storm Eleanor certainly caused havoc across the UK, resulting in storm force winds, torrential rain resulting in flooding for some unfortunate communities. I recently attended a flooding conference and learnt first hand the terrible devastation flooding brings to its victims.

Unfortunately, some video’s and photographs on social media show that some individuals are still intent on grabbing that favourite ‘selfie’ close to huge waves or fast incoming tides on beaches. Despite warnings from the Coastguard, RNLI, Police etc some still do it.

The Emergency Services, local authorities, NHS, Search & Rescue agencies, voluntary support organisations (Red Cross, St Johns Ambulance, 4×4 Rescue to name but a few) once again stepped up to the plate and deployed helping and supporting those effected in every way possible. I am always in awe of the support that all agencies and organisations provide to our communities in their hour of most need. Volunteers from a range of disparate groups give their time unreservedly at any hour of the day or night (quite often) when the call comes. These unselfish people will then go to work (often after a disturbed nights sleep) after returning from helping others and carry on with their own lives. Please spare a thought when you are tucked up in your nice, warm toasty bed (when the wind is howling outside, its lashing down with rain or its snowing heavily) that someone, somewhere will be woken by their pager or alerter and will leave without hesitation to help a complete stranger who’s in trouble and needs their help, putting themselves in danger.