IT has been a busy week for Burry Port RNLI.
On Saturday (Aug 1) at 1500 hrs the station was paged by Milford Haven UK Coastguard to launch both lifeboats to search for a missing swimmer in the Broughton Bay area of North Gower.
Tenby Lifeboat were also tasked, along with Rescue Helicopter 187, which was refuelling after an earlier incident. The Rhossili UK CG team were also heading to the area.
Press Officer for Burry Port RNLI Alun Wells said: “Both Burry Port Lifeboats arrived on scene and set search patterns to comb the area, but after 15 minutes the swimmer was safely located by the Rhossili Team, and reunited with his family. All units were stood down and returned to respective bases.
“On route back to Burry Port, our smaller D class lifeboat was diverted to Pembrey Old Harbour, where two groups of people had been spotted from the Lifeboat Station Operations Room, crossing on to the fast disappearing sandbank from the incoming tide. The persons were all intercepted by our volunteer crew, and safely directed away from the pending danger.
“Both boats were made ready for service at the Station.
“A big thank you to the large number of spectators who had witnessed the very rapid launch of the 2 lifeboats, for their cooperation with our safety marshals, and for the spontaneous round of applause they gave to our crews as they moved down the slipway. An unexpected event but well received by our volunteers.”
On Sunday (Aug 2) at 3.00pm, Burry Port RNLI were paged for a direct launch of both lifeboats, from Milford Haven UK Coastguard, to assist a small motor vessel, which was believed to have 4 persons on board, seen in the surf line off Broughton Beach on the North Gower coast. One casualty was reported to be in the water, hanging on to the side of the vessel.
Press Officer Alun Wells said: “Both boats were quickly launched, but the faster Atlantic 85 was first on scene, to find 3 of the casualties in the water, trying to hold the boat, in the surf, with the 4th casualty on board the stricken vessel.
“The Atlantic crew took control of the situation, taking the 4 casualties on board, and holding the vessel until the D class lifeboat arrived, enduring a westerly wind at force 4, and heavy surf breaking on the beach, the decision was taken to take the 4 casualties back to Burry Port as quickly as possible, as by now they were cold and wet, and the D class lifeboat would tow the vessel back to Burry Port Harbour.
“The 4 casualties were initially cared for in the Station, but one was showing signs of swallowing water, so an NHS paramedic was called, and shortly after the casualties were taken by ambulance to hospital for further checks.
“Burry port RNLI expressed their thanks to crew members Eddie and Catrin for their ‘casualty care’ in the Station, and special thanks to Mrs Hilary Howells, a retired NHS ward sister, and one of the station’s fundraisers, for helping out with the care of the casualties until the ambulance arrived.
A great team effort, from the shore crew who swiftly launched the lifeboats, and the teamwork that evolved from the boat crews, whose joint efforts and speedy actions probably prevented a potentially very serious incident from occurring.
“Thanks also to the Rhossili UK CG Team and the NHS Paramedics and Ambulance Crew for their prompt support.”