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Haydn Miller launched after sailor injures head on tall ship

Lifeboats News Release

Tenby’s RNLI all-weather lifeboat Haydn launched at 4.50pm on Wednesday 16th August after a report from the tall ship Stavros S Niarchos that a person had fallen, injuring their head in rough seas nine miles south of Caldey Island.

RNLI/Ben James

Coastguard Rescue Helicopter 187 begins its approach

The volunteer crew made best speed to the casualty vessel in rough seas and 35 knots winds whilst Coastguard Rescue Helicopter 187 from St Athan was also tasked.

As the lifeboat reached the Stavros S Niarchos, the helicopter was also arriving overhead and began lowering the winchman to the deck to assess the casualty. The job was made harder by the ship’s masts pitching from side to side in the swell but the winchman made it safely to the deck.

Whilst the casualty was being checked out, the helicopter pilot and lifeboat coxswain made the decision that due to the 3 metre swell and high winds, the safest course of action was to transfer the casualty in the lee of Caldey Island where there was much more shelter from the elements.

Once in the shelter of Caldey, the lifeboat managed to get alongside the Stavros and take both the casualty and the helicopter winchman aboard. The winchman, also a paramedic, had decided that the injury to the sailor didn’t warrant an airlift to hospital and the casualty was fine to be taken the short distance back to Tenby by lifeboat.

The winchman was then lifted back off the deck of the lifeboat by the helicopter, which then made its way back to base and the Haydn Miller made its way back to Tenby where the casualty was checked over by the awaiting paramedics before being released.

RNLI/Ben James

The winchman is lowered to the deck

RNLI/Ben James

The helicopter prepares to lift winchman back off deck of lifeboat

RNLI/Ben James

The helicopter overhead

RNLI/Ben James

The lifeboat prepares to go alongside the Stavros once in the lee of Caldey Island

RNLI/Ben James

The lifeboat prepares to go alongside the Stavros once in the lee of Caldey Island

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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