Three Very Different Rescues, all with a Safe Outcome.

Lifeboats News Release

The weekend proved a busy time for Porthcawl RNLI Lifeboat volunteers. Two shouts on Saturday, first to a broken down vessel, then later to two persons and a dog cut off by the incoming tide. Sunday was to wind surfers in difficulties.

The towns RNLI crews were first paged by HM Coastguard Agency at 13:25 on Saturday to reports of a broken down fishing boat off Stout Bay Nash Point. The Atlantic 85, Rose of the Shires was launched and located the casualty. Lifeboat crewman James Kinsella was transferred aboard to assist in securing a tow line and whilst the casualty was under tow back to Newton Bay, James used his day job experience and managed to get the engine running again. The tow was then released and the lifeboat escorted the vessel back to Newton.

With the lifeboat refuelled and rehoused crew were again paged at 17:00 to a report of two persons and a dog cut off below the high cliffs west of Nash Point. Both Porthcawl’s lifeboats were launched and headed east towards the area where the casualties had been reported trapped by the incoming tide. Working with Llantwit Coastguard unit the lifeboat crews located the casualties and two crew members were put ashore to assess the situation. Several attempts were made to take the smaller D class Jean Ryall into the rocky shore but with a dumping swell breaking right on the shore it proved too dangerous for Helmsman Chris Page to risk his lifeboat and crew. With Barry Coastguard Unit joining the rescue bid it was decided to attempt a cliff rescue but following a request from Porthcawl lifeboats the SAR helicopter was tasked to winch the two casualties and their dog to safety. The helicopter then stood by whilst the two crew swam out through the surf and back on board the lifeboats. All units were stood down at 18:50 and returned to base.

Following Sunday morning training RNLI crews were paged at 14:17 to reports of windsurfers in difficulty off Newton Point. Arriving on scene the D class lifeboat established one windsurfer had made it ashore whilst his colleague require assistance as his board mast had snapped. Safely on board the casualty was taken ashore at Newton where he was met by Porthcawl Coastguard Unit.

Porthcawl’s Lifeboat Operations Manager, Philip Missen said, ‘Our crews have proved their ability to assist in all types of situations not only over this busy weekend. Also that they work with other rescue assets to enable the safe rescue of casualties who find themselves in danger around our shores. With tides getting larger all this week I would ask shore walkers especially to make sure of tide times before they start any walks particularly east of our station along the cliff bases between Southerndown and Llantwit Major. We display tide times and heights 24/7 on our charities website,

It is also possible to view current sea conditions at Porthcawl Breakwater which can give an indication of the sea state along our coastline’.

SAR helicopter arrives on scene as lifeboat crews standby

RNLI Porthcawl

SAR helicopter on scene
Lifeboat crew assist in winching operation

RNLI Porthcawl

SAR prepare to winch casualties
Lifeboat prepares to rescue stranded windsurfer.

RNLI Porthcawl

Windsurfer stranded after his mast breaks

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.