Dungeness RNLI tasked to potential hazard in the shipping lanes
On Saturday 24 June at 1.03pm, the Dungeness RNLI Shannon-class lifeboat and her volunteer crew were requested by the UK Coastguard to attend a possible makeshift raft drifting in the shipping lanes 10 miles south east of Dungeness.
The sighting had been made by a container ship and they had informed the UK Coastguard of the potential shipping hazard.
The lifeboat was then launched and a search was undertaken of the area in question. During this search, items were found in the water that matched the description and the volunteer crew retrieved the hazards from the water.
The lifeboat was then stood down and returned to Dungeness.
Second Coxswain, Trevor Bunney said: ‘We were tasked to a possible hazardous object in the shipping lanes which could have had the potential to cause damage to other vessels if left unattended. Once on scene, it was clear that the hazard was not as large as initially expected, however we still removed the items from the water to ensure the shipping lane was free of debris. It is very important to dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard if you see any hazardous items in the water so that they can be safely retrieved.’
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.