Local lifeboat volunteers on call over festive period

Falmouth Packet: Local lifeboat volunteers on call over festive period Local lifeboat volunteers on call over festive period

Volunteer RNLI lifeboat crews from across the south west, including Falmouth and The Lizard, were as always remain on call over the festive season, prepared to leave their family celebrations to help save those in trouble at sea.

Last year the charity's volunteers in the region were involved in a total of 30 search and rescue operations over the nine day period, which included the Port Isaac lifeboat crew saving a man's life on New Year's Eve.

The year 2012 was the busiest festive period for the south west lifeboat crews since 1990 with 17 of the 35 stations in the region being called out to a total of 30 emergencies. The volunteers at Plymouth and Weston super Mare were the busiest launching a total of four times between December 23 and January 1.

On New Year's Eve 2012, the Port Isaac RNLI lifeboat crew rescued a fisherman who was washed off rocks near Tintagel Head.

Christmas 2012 also saw the RNLI's specially trained flood rescue volunteers deployed to the flooding in Devon and Cornwall where they saved a woman's life and rescued householders in a dramatic night of operations.

On December 22 a 13 strong team which was made up of 11 volunteer lifeboat crew members from St Agnes, Looe and Rock in Cornwall, Dartmouth in Devon, Lyme Regis in Dorset and Weston super Mare in Somerset and led by two full time RNLI Inspectors were deployed with two lifeboats, a D class inshore lifeboat and an inshore rescue boat, to work alongside other emergency services to assisted 12 people, 2 dogs and 6 cats from homes in Lostwithiel in Cornwall.

Dave Page, RNLI Acting Regional Operations Manager said: "Our volunteer crew are on call 365 days a year, 24 hours a day, and that includes Christmas and New Year. When most people are settling down to spend quality time with their family and friends, these dedicated volunteers remain prepared to drop everything should they be needed to help others in trouble at sea.

"I thank both them and their loved ones who must also be prepared for Christmas to be disturbed by the call of the pager."

If you are planning on visiting the coast over the festive period visit www.rnli.org.uk/seasafety or www.rnli.org.uk/beachsafety for the RNLI's free all year round safety advice for sea users and beach visitors.

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