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Larne RNLI responds to false alarm with good intent

Lifeboats News Release

Larne RNLI’s relief all-weather boat Duke of Windsor launched this morning (Friday 1 June) to investigate a call from a member of the public about a suspected boat with no one onboard.

RNLI/Steven Lee

The lifeboat launched from Larne Harbour this morning (Friday 1 June) at 10.42am, responding to a request from Belfast Coastguard.

Launching into a calm sea, but with reduced visibility due to a sea mist, the volunteer crew were informed that a member of the public had contacted the Coastguard after viewing a small red and black boat with what appeared to be nobody onboard.

The Coastguard requested that the lifeboat search in the Whitehead area to see if there was any sign of the boat or anybody onboard. Bangor RNLI was also requested to aid in the search.

As the lifeboat was making its way towards the Whitehead coastline further information was relayed from the Coastguard to say that the fisherman and owner of the boat was onboard and safe and well, so the search was called off.

Norman Surplus, Larne RNLI Second Coxswain, said: ‘We would like to thank the member of the public who raised the alarm when they were concerned. It is important to keep vigilant around the coastline and to know to ring 999 or 112 and ask for the Coastguard if you see anything untoward.

‘We would encourage anyone going to sea to always respect the water. Plan accordingly and ensure that your vessel and engine are in good working order before setting off. Always let someone know where you are going and when you are expected back.’


For information please contact Steven Lee, Larne RNLI Deputy Lifeboat Press Officer Tel: 00447753274490 or Fiona Kirkpatrick Larne RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer Tel: 077 3805 9405 email or Niamh Stephenson RNLI Public Relations Manager on 00 353 87 1254 124 email or Nuala McAloon RNLI Press Officer Tel: 00 353 87 6483547 email

Key facts about the RNLI

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. Our volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service in the United Kingdom and Ireland from 238 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 240 beaches around the UK and operates a specialist flood rescue team, which can respond anywhere across the UK and Ireland when inland flooding puts lives at risk.

The RNLI relies on public donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. As a charity it is separate from, but works alongside, government-controlled and funded coastguard services. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 our lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved at least 140,000 lives. Volunteers make up 95% of the charity, including 4,600 volunteer lifeboat crew members and 3,000 volunteer shore crew. Additionally, tens of thousands of other dedicated volunteers raise funds and awareness, give safety advice, and help in our museums, shops and offices.

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The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number 20003326 in the Republic of Ireland