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RNLI lifejacket worth £458 stolen from Portaferry lifeboat station

Lifeboats News Release

An RNLI lifejacket worth £458 has been stolen from Portaferry lifeboat station in County Down.

RNLI lifejacket

RNLI/Portaferry

RNLI lifejacket

The lifejacket, a vital part of a volunteer crew member’s kit, is thought to have been stolen sometime between 2 March and 10 April.

The unique lifejacket is designed specifically for search and rescue and is fitted with a water activated emergency light and integral flare pockets for day and night distress flares.

Brian Bailie, Portaferry RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager said: ‘The lifejacket is an expensive and essential piece of our volunteers’ crew kit. It was innovatively designed with search and rescue in mind which means it provides increased safety, efficiency and effectiveness for crew when they respond to a call out. On top of its features, it also holds zipped pockets for items including casualty care kit, torches and gloves and has a spray hood to protect against sea spray.

‘It will cost the RNLI almost £500 to replace this lifejacket which is a significant loss to the charity which relies on the public’s generosity to save lives at sea.’

Anyone with any information is asked to get in touch with the PSNI by calling 101 and quoting CC2017041700737.

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RNLI media contacts

For more information please telephone Nuala McAloon RNLI Press Officer Ireland on 00353876483547 or email Nuala_McAloon@rnli.org.uk or Niamh Stephenson RNLI Public Relations Manager Ireland on 00 353 87 1254 124 or Niamh_Stephenson@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.

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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.