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The Royal National Lifeboat Institution - Saves Lives at Sea



The RNLI lifeboat at Kinghorn was launched on its 800th rescue mission tonight (Thursday 14/07/05) when it went to a medical emergency on a yacht in Aberdour.

The lifeboat was launched around 5.45pm to a report of a seventy year old man, who was severely ill and alone, on board the 22 foot sailing vessel, 'Seapad' which had been anchored near to Aberdour.

The RNLI volunteer crew, on their 800th rescue mission since the charity (RNLI) stationed a lifeboat at Kinghorn in 1965, arrived on scene around 6pm.

Helmsman Mike McErlane said, 'The owner of the boat, a 70 year old man from the Dalgety Bay area, had managed to anchor the boat and fell severely ill. He managed to contact the Coastguard and advise them of his plight, and they contacted us to carry out a medivac (Medical Evacuation) of the casualty.'

'We arrived on scene within 15 minutes of being paged and we could see that the gentleman was seriously ill with a large amount of blood loss, caused through an illness. It was a medical emergency and we managed to transfer the casualty to the lifeboat and requested an Ambulance to meet us at Aberdour harbour. We carried the man to the harbour reassuring him and keeping him calm until the arrival of the Ambulance who then conveyed him to the Queen Margaret Hospital for treatment.'

Mike continued, 'Luckily we are in the process of being refreshed on our first aid skills on our continuing Crew Training Programme, and just last night we all went through some first aid refreshing with the travelling trainers who go around the country training the RNLI crews. You never know what the next shout will bring, and the constant training we receive keeps us up to speed on every possible eventuality, so that whenever we arrive we have the knowledge and confidence to deal with anything that may confront us.'

'Although not all of our 800 shouts have had a happy ending, it is always good to have helped save someone who's life is in danger, and hopefully the gentleman will be fully recovered soon and back on the sea.'

The rest of the crew on the lifeboat were Neil Chalmers, Leanne Fisher and Jason Quinn. The shore Launch crew were Mick McMillan and Norman Soutar.

RNLI is a registered charity which relies entirely on public support to keep the crews trained and properly kitted out, ready to save lives at sea.