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The Royal National Lifeboat Institution - Saves Lives at Sea

News Articles

      NEW LIFEBOAT CREW MEMBER IS A REAL DUMMY! (05/10/2006) more...
        The RNLI lifeboat at Kinghorn has a real dummy as a new Crew member!



        The dummy is a lifelike training aid who can be thrown into the water and recovered by the crew, carrying out various search and rescue techniques, dependant on the weather, tide and amount of swell affecting the sea. The dummy will sit in the water and drift like a real person, driven by the wind, waves and tides and will help the crews hone their skills, which they are frequently called out to use in real life saving conditions. The Inshore lifeboat was the busiest in Scotland last year and has already been sent out on 45 rescue missions so far this year.



        The crew are looking for the public's help to name the new crew member and the best entry will win a free family pass to this years Spooky Walk which the crew are holding on the 26th, 27th, and 28th of October. The Spooky Walk will feature brand new story lines for this year, with frightening consequences!



        If you want to win a free family pass for the night of your choosing, send your entries by e-mail to competitions@kinghorn.org.uk

      EX-VOLUNTEERS DONATE TO VOLUNTEERS (20/09/2006) more...


        RNLI volunteers at Kinghorn Lifeboat Station received a welcome addition to their fundraising year, last night, when they were presented with a cheque for £150 that had been raised by members of RNSX Rosyth Branch.



        The RNSX members are an association of ex- Royal Navy Volunteer Reservists, who set up after the Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve was disbanded. Each year the association donates monies to various charities, and the RNLI were chosen as this years charity.



        The Rosyth group of RNSX meet every Wednesday at Dalgety Bay Sailing Club where they are restoring a cabin cruiser for use of the clubs younger members.

        Charlie Tulloch, Lifeboat Operations Manager at Kinghorn's RNLI Station said, "This donation came right out of the blue! We have a fundraising branch of the RNLI in Kinghorn who work hard collecting funds for the charity, through various coffee mornings, door collections and the Open Day, and it is a constant battle to keep sufficient funding for the charity to provide the 24/7 rescue capability 365 days of the year, so any donations from outside bodies are always warmly accepted. I wish to convey my gratitude and that of the crews, to the RNSX for their donation."

      SAILING CLUB CAUGHT OUT BY ROUGH SEAS (27/08/2006) more...
        The RNLI lifeboat at Kinghorn was launched this afternoon (27/08/2006) after 3 Dinghy's capsized off Pettycur, in rough seas.



        Despite it being a fine day, the wind had been blowing up some very choppy 1 metre high swells, in the unsheltered areas of the Forth, and was coupled with a high tide with strong currents. The 39th callout for the volunteer crew this year, started early afternoon when Kinghorn Sailing Club had several dinghy's in the protected waters of Kinghorn bay.



        About 1.40pm, 3 of the crews ventured further afield towards Pettycur, and were unprepared for the rougher sea conditions outwith the shelter of the bay. All 3 crews were unable to control their vessels in the rough sea swells and all capsized. Although the clubs emergency boat was nearby, it was unable to deal with the 3 overturned dinghy's and sent out a distress flare, which sent a flurry of emergency calls to the coastguard, who requested the RNLI lifeboat be launched.



        Scott McIlravie, Helmsman on the RNLI lifeboat said, "The clubs emergency rib was able to rescue the crews from the water, but were unable to deal with the upturned dinghy's. We arrived on scene within minutes and were able to right the vessels and take two back under tow to Kinghorn Harbour with the rescue boat returning to recover the third."



        "Although the weather was fine and sunny in the shelter of the bay, the wind was fairly strong and once you get out from the sheltered area of the bay, the change in the sea conditions can be dramatic, and can catch out the inexperienced sailor."



        "Thankfully everyone was rescued from the water and I think some lessons have been learned."



        The RNLI crew with Scott, were Neil Chalmers, Joanne Wibberly and Leanne Fisher.

        Attached Jpgs taken by the crew on the shout, show the RNLI crew rescuing the capsized vessels.

      SUPERMUM RETURNS (31/07/2006) more...
        Supermum Judith Frame, a volunteer tractor driver with the RNLI lifeboat at Kinghorn, has created a new swimming record and raised more than £1600 for the RNLI charity in the process.



        Judith (41), a mother of three, lives in the village and works in the Ship Tavern. The swimming record was created as part of the Lifeboat's annual Open Day celebrations, which this year raised over £5000 of which Judith raised £1622, with still more sponsorship being handed in daily. Judith decided to try to swim from Inchkeith Island to the shore as part of the Open Day events, and by doing so she created the first officially timed swim From Inchkeith Island to Kinghorn and took 1hr 46 mins to complete the swim.



        Judith said of the venture, "When we were deciding on what sort of events to hold this year, I stupidly had a brainstorm and thought I could swim from Inchkeith to Kinghorn and hopefully raise some sponsorship money. I then began to realise the enormity of the task and amount of training I would have to do to carry it out, as I hadn't done anything like that before."



        "I had to undertake months of training, both swimming and exercise to get myself in condition to give the swim a good attempt, I didn't want to let anyone down once I had decided to do it, but there were times when I was swimming in the freezing cold water that I thought to myself, ' what am I doing here?'. I couldn't have done it without the assistance given to me both monetary and other help by the Ship Tavern where I work. In between caring for the kids, working at the pub and running down to launch the lifeboat when needed, I did manage to get my training regime set up and carry it through."



        "I was over the moon when I completed the swim and arrived on the beach to a warm welcome from everyone. I would like to thank everyone who supported me on this swim and for being so generous with their donations, my coach Allison and fund raiser Dave for all they have done."



        As well as watching the swim, visitors to the lifeboat station saw the lifeboat in action with a Helicopter, and enjoyed all the stalls and events that were held on a glorious day. Look out for next years Open Day!



        Attached jpegs show Judith arriving on Kinghorn Beach and being supported by family and friends after the swim. Pictures courtesy of Dave MacGregor.

      TWENTY YEARS OF RESCUE SERVICE (28/07/2006) more...
        Mike McErlane, a Helmsman on the RNLI's lifeboat at Kinghorn, has been awarded a long service medal for 20 years of voluntary service with the RNLI.



        Mike, (37) a Marine Contractor with BP at Houndpoint Oil terminal, started as a volunteer with the RNLI at Kinghorn, when he was 17, way back in 1986. Since becoming a volunteer, Mike has been promoted to the position of Helmsman (in charge of the boat and crew during a shout). Mike lives in the village with his wife Katy, and they are expecting their first child at the end of the year.



        During his service with the RNLI Lifeboat, Mike has rescued many people , vessels and animals and has been given several bravery awards. Mike recalled some of his experiences during the past 20 years," It was certainly very different when I first started as a trainee, even the type of lifeboat we had then, was so inferior to the Atlantic 75 we use at the moment. We were housed in a 'shed' which used to fill up when the tide was high! Now we have a purpose built boathouse which has a warm room where the drysuits hang, which makes it more comfortable,especially on a winters night. We also have an operations room which makes our training far more professional."



        Mike, who admits to not being able to swim too well, continued,"Some of the worst shouts which stick in my mind include the plane crash off Granton, the sinking of the fishing boat Amber and the many bodies we have been tasked to recover. However the highlights include every time we manage to save a life, like the mother and father who had been taken out in their son's new boat for fathers day, but unfortunately it sank. They were so happy when we pulled them on board. Saving lots of schoolkids when the maid of the Forth when aground on Inchcolm, however some had to be rescued by helicopter and when we asked which ones would want that, they ALL put their hands up! I also remember saving a dog which was washed off the Esplanade in Kirkcaldy during a Links Market and was washed out to sea, the dog only managed to keep afloat due to all the fur and was struggling to survive when we arrived and pulled it out, once we lifted it on board it shook itself, wagged its tail and laid its head on my lap all the way back into shore,"



        Mike was lucky enough to get the very last 'shout' on the old 'C' class lifeboat and the very first on the new Atlantic 75.

        The picture shows Mike surrounded by his crew being presented with his medal by RNLI Kinghorn Operations Manager Charlie Tulloch.

      LIFEBOAT RESCUES RESCUER (27/07/2006) more...
        The RNLI lifeboat at Kinghorn was launched this evening to a report of persons in the water off Granton in Edinburgh.



        The volunteer crew were paged by the Coastguard at 8.10pm on Thursday (27/07/06) after distress calls were received by the Coastguard reporting persons in the water off the middle pier at Granton Harbour. The Lifeboat arrived on scene around 8.20pm, and were informed that Police had recovered a woman from the water, but they had arrived fast enough to rescue a woman in her 30's who was still in the Forth.



        Mike McErlane Helmsman on the RNLI Lifeboat,said "When we arrived we could see Police and Ambulance on the shore and there appeared to be several people milling about. We saw that there was still one lady in the water and we pulled her onto the lifeboat. She told us that a woman had apparently jumped or fallen into the water from the pier, when she and her two teenage sons were there. She and her two sons had jumped into the water to effect a rescue, and Police assisted in pulling the female from the water."



        "The woman's two sons managed to get out of the water under their own steam, but the mother was still trying to get out when we arrived and pulled her out. We handed her over to paramedics on the shore who wrapped her in blankets and took her to the waiting Ambulance.She and her sons were very brave, the water is still very cold even at this time of year, even during a heatwave. Thankfully everyone was saved on this occasion."



        The crew on this callout were Mike McErlane, Steve Currie, Michael Chalmers and Ian McLean on the tractor.

      SPEEDBOAT RESCUED FROM ROCKS IN KIRKCALDY (24/07/2006) more...
        The RNLI lifeboat at Kinghorn was launched this evening to a Speedboat in distress at the Long Craigs rocks just off Seafield, Kirkcaldy.



        The volunteer crew were paged by the Coastguard at 8.40pm on Friday (21/07/06) after a distress call was received from the stricken speedboat, which had a middle aged man and woman on board and which had struck the rocks near the shore and damaged the propellor. The occupants were desperately trying to paddle the vessel into the park area at Seafield where several concerned members of the public had called the Coastguard.



        The RNLI lifeboat arrived on scene within a few minutes and were able to rescue the vessel and bring it under tow into Kirkcaldy Harbour.



        The crew on this occasion were Steve Currie, Phil Smythe and Neil Chalmers. shore crew Ian McLean


      RNLI KINGHORN LIFEBOAT - OPEN DAY (06/07/2006) more...
        The RNLI's busiest Inshore Lifeboat in Scotland, Kinghorn Lifeboat which covers both Edinburgh and Fife sides of the Forth, are holding an Open Day on Saturday 15th July, 2006 between 12.30pm and 4pm.



        "This year's annual Open Day will take place during the afternoon of Saturday, 15th July," explained Charlie Tulloch, Kinghorn Lifeboats' Operations Manager, "and we hope that as many people as possible will come along on what promises to be a very special and enjoyable day.".

        The crews are hoping for an all-time high number of visitors when they open their doors to the public this year, as the event was not held last year due to G8 affecting everyone. This is the major fund-raising event of the year for Kinghorn and the busy station will play host to visitors of all ages, wishing to see the historic lifeboat up close and to meet the crew, men and women, who have already responded to 24 rescue calls this year.

        "We always look forward to our annual Open Day," Charlie continued, "when we can show off the 'Frederick Robertson', our 24 ft long, Atlantic 75 rescue craft, the fastest in the RNLI fleet and capable of up to 34 knots. It allows people to see our boat, speak with the crews and have some good old fashioned fun and games."

        "On 15th July the boat will be just one of the attractions on display, however," he added, "with a host of other activities, such as one of our volunteer shore crew, Judith Frame, undertaking a sponsored swim from Inchkeith Island to the shore at the boathouse, there will also be a tug of war held between two boats instead of on land, a Helicopter rescue display, Static displays by the emergency services, stalls and fun for everyone being laid on throughout the afternoon at the Lifeboat Station and adjacent beach area."

        The RNLI operates more than 320 lifeboats throughout the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland, launching on average 21 times and saving 2 lives every day of the year.

        Many of the rescues involve people visiting the coast from inland, often ordinary people caught out by a change in the weather or an extra high tide, with nearly 2000 rescues last year also involving people in distress who were not on board a vessel of any kind but who had been cut off by high water, were swimmers, divers and others who had fallen off cliffs and piers.


      ANOTHER SUNDAY- ANOTHER DOUBLE RESCUE! (25/06/2006) more...
        The fine weather has sparked off the usual spate of callouts for the volunteers of Scotland's busiest RNLI Inshore Lifeboat. RNLI Kinghorn lifeboat had a record 57 rescue missions last year, and look likely to achieve that figure again this year.



        The first rescue of the day, and the 23rd of the year, started for the volunteer crew with their pagers being activated at 8.45am (25/06/06). The crew were tasked by the Coastguard to assist the 35 foot fishing vessel, 'The Marrie Bay' which had suffered engine failure, brought about by a burst fuel pipe, leading to an airlocked fuel pump. The boat was drifting north east of Inchkeith Island and had 3 men on board, aged 30-40 years from the Edinburgh area.



        The crew of Helmsman Paul Wibberly, Steve Currie, Mike Chalmers and Phil Smythe, arrived on scene within ten minutes and attached a tow rope to the stricken vessel and towed it safely to its home harbour at Newhaven.



        The second rescue (24th) began with the pagers being activated again at 2.45pm. This time the volunteer crew were sent to Kirkcaldy Bay to assist a 22 foot rib (inflatable) which had suffered gearbox failure whilst on a trip from its home port of Granton, Edinburgh. The rib had 6 persons on board, 3 men and 3 women all in their early 30's, and was drifting in the bay without power.



        The lifeboat arrived within 10 minutes of being launched and found the boat to be drifting 2 miles south east of West Wemyss, although all on board were sensibly wearing lifejackets, the 3 women were transferred to the lifeboat for the tow back into Dysart Harbour for safety.



        Helmsman Paul Wibberly said, " Its been a fairly busy day for us, normally we have training arranged on a Sunday, but we had to fit that in between real shouts today! Both rescues were straightforward tows, carried out in good weather which makes a nice change. When we towed the rib from Granton Harbour into Dysart Harbour, the crew received a 'friendly' welcome, not so much a welcome as a question...How long are ye gonnae be here?..Still its not often we get to carry 3 young ladies on the lifeboat..so it was a bonus."



        Kinghorn Lifeboat will be holding its annual Open Day on Saturday 15th July, 1230 - 4pm, where the Public will get a chance to see the RNLI lifeboat close up and also in action, along with lots of fun and games and chances to win some stunning prizes.



        1. The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is a charity that provides a lifesaving service sea (up to 100 nautical miles) 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
        2. As a charity the RNLI relies on public donations to help train and equip its volunteer lifeboat crews helping them to continue to save lives at sea, safely and effectively.
        3. Without the commitment and dedication of volunteers the RNLI's role of saving lives at sea would be impossible.

        (Attached jpegs show RNLI Kinghorn Lifeboat crew towing the stricken vessel Marrie Bay, with Steve Currie on the Helm, Mike Chalmers on the side and Phil Smythe on board the fishing boat, the other jpegs show the 3 women from the second incident aboard Kinghorn Lifeboat with Helmsman Paul Wibberly at the helm, towing the disabled rib.)





      32FT FISHING VESSEL RESCUED. (22/06/2006) more...
        The arrival of the Summer weather has sparked off the usual spate of callouts for the volunteers of Scotland's busiest RNLI Inshore Lifeboat. RNLI Kinghorn lifeboat had a record 57 rescue missions last year, and look likely to achieve that figure again this year.



        The 22nd launch of the year for the lifeboat, happened around 11.30am, today, (22/06/06) after the Coastguard received a mayday from the 32ft fishing vessel "Margaret Jane", which was half a mile west of Inchkeith Island and had suffered an engine failure.



        In a strong south westerly wind, blowing up the sea into a moderate to rough swell, the RNLI lifeboat was launched and arrived on scene within 10 minutes to help the stricken vessel . The volunteer crew of Helmsmen Paul Wibberly and Mike McErlane along with trainee crew member Mark Brown, quickly assessed the situation and brought the vessel under tow.



        Helmsman Mike McErlane said, "Our pagers were activated by the Coastguard around 11.30am and by 1140am we were drawing alongside the drifting boat, which had two elderly occupants in their 70's on board. The sea had quite a big swell, especially in the middle of the Forth, as the waves were being built by the strong south westerly winds. When their engine had failed, rather than try to sort it, the crew sensibly, given the conditions, decided to notify the coastguard as their boat was drifting and being blown towards Inchkeith Island and the surrounding rocks by the strong wind. On arrival we set up a tow line and towed the vessel back into its home port at Dysart."



        Kinghorn Lifeboat will be holding its annual Open Day on Saturday 15th July, 1230 - 4pm, where you will get a chance to see the RNLI lifeboat close up and also in action, along with lots of fun and games and chances to win some stunning prizes.









        1. The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is a charity that provides a lifesaving service sea (up to 100 nautical miles) 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
        2. As a charity the RNLI relies on public donations to help train and equip its volunteer lifeboat crews helping them to continue to save lives at sea, safely and effectively.
        3. Without the commitment and dedication of volunteers the RNLI's role of saving lives at sea would be impossible.
        4. RNLI website - www.rnli.org.uk



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