Busy 12 months for RNLI crews

Newhaven Lifeboat. SUS-141003-163946001
Newhaven Lifeboat. SUS-141003-163946001

RNLI crews in Sussex rescued 429 people and saved 13 lives in 2015, the charity’s annual launch statistics has revealed.

In 2015 in Sussex, the charity’s lifeboats launched 398 times, including 57 from Newhaven Lifeboat Station, to attend a wide range of incidents including commercial vessels in trouble, adrift fishermen, struggling swimmers and leisure boaters in difficulty.

Overall, RNLI lifeboat volunteers in Sussex rescued 429 people. Of those, 13 were classed as lives saved – a specific RNLI criteria where a person would have died if not for the RNLI arriving on scene.

During the 57 launches from Newhaven, 52 people were rescued. The busiest station in Sussex was Eastbourne, launching 99 times and rescuing 123 people.

Guy Addington, RNLI community incident reduction manager in the South East, said: ‘Once again, our volunteer lifeboat crews have had a busy 12 months working hard to serve their local communities. They willingly drop everything to respond to an emergency call for help day or night, come rain or shine.

“Over the past year, the RNLI has also been working hard to prevent people from getting into danger using a number of interventions including lifejacket clinics, or our Respect the Water campaign. We understand that things can go wrong from time to time, so some preventative maintenance and annual checks prior to the boating season should allow for worry free sea time.

“I would like to thank all of our volunteers for their tireless hard work and dedication throughout the past 12 months. Without all of our supporters, fundraisers, crews and education teams our lifesaving service would not operate.”

The RNLI’s national Respect the Water campaign aims to reduce the number of coastal drownings.

Notable RNLI rescues in Sussex last year included when a hot tub was found drifting in the sea after Newhaven RNLI were called to a sinking houseboat.

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