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Volunteers race to rescue two from dinghy blown over a mile out to sea

Lifeboats News Release

Skegness RNLI, D class inshore lifeboat was launched on Saturday 8 June to reports of an inflatable dinghy being blown out to sea with two people on board; one and a half miles out to see from the coast at Chapel St Leonards, north of Skegness.

Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) volunteer crew were alerted to the incident around 11:20 am on Saturday 8 June by UK Coastguard Humber based at Bridlington, The team of three crew worked with the assistance of NCI (National Coast Watch) Chapel St Leonards to locate the casualties and bring them to safety.

The four-meter inflatable dinghy was located drifting north east out to sea on a stiff south-westerly wind, some mile and a half from the shore, its occupants were unaware of the danger they were in or the difficulty they would have trying to reach the shore. The pair had been out testing out their new boat.

Lee St Quinton, RNLI Helmsman for Skegness RNLI Lifeboat, said: ‘On this occasion the gentlemen were very lucky that someone had alerted us to their plight, inflatable boats and dinghies are not suitable for the open sea and should not be used where situations like this can evolve. In this case the people involved were not prepared for emergencies, there were no life jackets and no method of alerting anyone for help save for mobile phones which are not reliable out to sea.’

The two occupants of the inflatable were assessed to make sure they were in good health and transferred in to the lifeboat, eventually being brought back to the shore and handed to the care of local coastguard officers.

Notes to editors

· Skegness lifeboat station has been operating since 1839. To learn more about the lifeboat station go to: www.rnliskegness.org.uk

· Helmsman Lee St Quinton is available for interview

· Video footage of rescue will be available separately

RNLI media contacts

For more information please telephone Adam Holmes, RNLI volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on 07966282294 or Adam_Holmes@rnli.org.uk or Clare Hopps, Regional Media Officer on 09876 234561 or Clare_Hopps@rnli.org.uk or contact the RNLI Press Office on 01202 336789.

RNLI/Adam Holmes

Volunteers from Skegness RNLI come alongside an inflatable dinghy adrift a nile and a half out to sea

RNLI/Adam Holmes

The dinghy is taken under tow and the casualties taken aboard the Skegness RNLI inshore lifeboat

Key facts about the RNLI

The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.

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Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or or by email.

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