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Two persons saved from upturned trimaran by Dungeness lifeboat

At 2.55 pm, the Shannon class lifeboat 13-02 The Morrell was launched with Coxswain Stuart Adams in command of the RNLI vessel. Once on scene, Coxswain Adams established that both casualties were wearing lifejackets but that the female was 37 weeks pregnant and both people were very wet and cold. In this very difficult situation both casualties managed, with the help from our professionally trained volunteer crew to scramble onto the lifeboat. Assessments were made on their conditions and it was decided that they should be airlifted to the local hospital from Dungeness. The RNLI lifeboat gently ferried them into the beach to our shore crew and Dungeness Coastguard. Both casualties managed to walk unaided to a waiting ambulance and after more assessments were transferred to the RAF helcopter 125 that was standing by to take then to the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford. The customs vessel Valiant stood by the upturned craft until the RNLI lifeboat has been relaunched and managed to tow the stricken craft into the beach at Dungeness.

Coxswain Adams said "These two persons were very lucky people. They did all the right things, wearing lifejackets and staying with their vessel. Our quick response after a member of the public rang 999 in the new fast RNLI Shannon, halved the time it would have taken to be on scene and I definitely know that two lives were saved here today"

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Photograph of two persons on board upturned hull of trimaran
photograph taken by volunteer crew member Mark Richardson

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Photograph of casualties on shore taken by volunteer tractor driver Noel Packer

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Photograph of stricken vessel being prepared to be towed to safety by lifeboat
photograph by volunteer crew member Mark Richardson

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Helicopter 125 and Dungeness Coastguard, photograph by Lyn Griffiths - Lifeboat Visits Officer

RNLI media contacts

  • Judith Richardson – Dungeness RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer
    01797 320062 / 07859 264226 / This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • James Oxley, RNLI Public Relations Manager (London/East/South East)
    0207 6207425 / 07786 668825 / This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

For enquiries outside normal business hours, contact the RNLI duty press officer on 01202 336789

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Key facts about the RNLI: The RNLI is the charity that 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 230 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and has more than 140 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK. 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 137,000 lives.

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A charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number CHY 2678 in the Republic of Ireland.