News Articles

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution - Saves Lives at Sea



Kinghorn RNLI Lifeboat volunteers were called out on Sunday to the report of a speedboat adrift off Portobello.

Forth Coastguard received numerous emergency calls around 5pm on Sunday afternoon of reports of a vessel in difficulty off Portobello with four persons on board.

Kinghorn Lifeboat crew were paged at 5.05pm and launched 5 minutes later.

Helmsman Scott McIllravie recalls the rescue “We made our way across the Forth in squally, gale force conditions and steep seas. Visibility was almost non-existent at times due to the spray being whipped up by the wind. Once on scene it took us about 15 minutes to find the boat due to patchy communications with informants and very poor visibility.”

“Once we located the boat we discovered that two people had managed to swim ashore earlier but the boat was drifting fast and the other two casualties just stayed in and held on. We recovered them to the Atlantic 85 lifeboat and landed them ashore to the local coastguard at Portobello beach.”

It is understood the speedboat had been recently purchased.

Scott McIllravie continued “it's a timely message about knowing your limits and only going to sea if you can do so safely. This means having some basic safety equipment including lifejackets, suitable clothing, a means of communication such as a VHF radio, and flares.

Also joining Scott on this rescue were Michael Chalmers, Steven Wallace and Iain Tulloch. The tractor driver who launched the Lifeboat was Evelyn Stoker.

Kinghorn Lifeboat Station is preparing for their annual Open Day which will be held this Saturday, 17th July between 12pm and 4pm at Kinghorn Beach. This is your opportunity to see the Lifeboat ‘Tommy Niven’ up close, and see a rescue demonstration. There will also be stalls and fundraising events to help keep the RNLI afloat.

By Neil Chalmers (transitional LPO)