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Eastbourne Lifeboats in search below cliffs at Beachy Head

Lifeboats News Release

Both Eastbourne RNLI Lifeboats were launched early this morning (30th May) along with local Coastguard cliff rescue units and rescue helicopter 163 following a report that a car had gone over the cliffs at Beachy Head

Dover Coastguard received the initial call via mobile phone from two people aboard a small rowing dinghy who observed the wreck of a car beneath the cliffs at Beachy Head. Fearing that people may have serviced the fall and were trapped inside, a full search and rescue scenario was initiated. Whilst the other rescue services were searching between Holywell and Birling Gap, Eastbourne all-weather lifeboat located the first informants, who were still in the area, to obtain more information. Further questioning revealed that they hadn't actually seen the vehicle fall from the cliffs but had simply reported the vehicle on the beach. Having established the exact location of the wreck, confirmed by the first informants, the volunteer crew of Eastbourne inshore lifeboat went ashore to investigate. They were able to confirm that the wreck was from a previous incident and had been on the beach for some time. The rescue services were stood down with thanks from Dover Coastguard, the incident being logged as a false alarm with good intent.

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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