Bangor RNLI rescues three and thrills thousands
Saturday 6 August was a busy day for Bangor RNLI.
A scheduled visit to Donaghadee to take part in an exercise with Donaghadee RNLI lifeboat Saxon and HM Coastguard helicopter G-MCGG, took an unexpected turn when the crew was asked to attend a broken down jetski, stranded on rocks off Millisle.
Bangor’s volunteer crew were able to bring the jetski rider on board inshore lifeobat Jessie Hillyard, and tow the jetski back to Millisle.
One of Bangor RNLI's experienced helms, James Gillespie, said later 'There was a reasonably strong offshore wind, and the gentleman, having beached the jetski in shallows around rocks, was in no immediate danger. However he was lucky not to have broken down in open water. We would urge the public to take precautions in case the worst happens and you break down or have an accident.'
Having completed the rescue, Bangor’s lifeboat crew then returned to Donaghadee with minutes to spare before the planned helicopter rescue exercise. After rendezvousing with their Donaghadee colleagues, it was only minutes before the large crowd gathered on Donaghadee Pier were able to see the helicopter approach and complete the safe transfer of two Bangor crewmen to the Donaghadee boat.
Anyone viewing the spectacle could only marvel at the skill involved in controlling the movements of different craft in challenging conditions. After a final flypast to wave to the enthralled crowd, the helicopter headed off, leaving all involved with invaluable experience.
Even then, though, Bangor’s crew had a further surprise as, on their return to Bangor, they were tasked with going to the assistance of two men who had run aground on their fishing boat off Kilroot Power station. With the help of two strong crewmembers they were able to refloat the vessel and return all safely to Carrickfergus marina.
RNLI media contacts
For information please contact Mark Johnston Bangor RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer Tel: 07976 256655 email: RNLIbangor@icloud.com or Niamh Stephenson RNLI Public Relations Manager on 00 353 87 1254 124 email Niamh_Stephenson@rnli.org.uk or Nuala McAloon RNLI Press Officer Tel: 00 353 87 6483547 email Nuala_McAloon@rnli.org.uk
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.