The volunteer lifeboat crew were paged by UK Coastguard at 16.41pm Wednesday 1st September 2021 following reports of two paddleboarders in difficulty at Porth Neigwl.
The Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat, the Peter and Ann Setten, was launched at 16.51pm but was later stood-down after the father of one of the casualties had swam out to assist them.
The volunteer crew continued to the beach at Porth Neigwl to speak to the casualties, two female teenagers, and check that no further assistance was required before returning to the lifeboat station at 17.35pm where the lifeboat was thoroughly washed down, refuelled and left ready for service.
RNLI/Abersoch Emma Wood
The girls, who were both wearing wetsuits, had no means of calling for help with them and were not wearing lifejackets.
Andy Vowell, Lifeboat Operations Manager, said ‘We would always advise wearing a lifejacket whenever heading out onto the water as well as carrying a means of calling for help’. He added, ‘With the sharp increase in the popularity of paddleboarding over the last two summers, and in an area where the beaches do not have the benefit of lifeguards, we have seen a sharp rise in the number of call-outs for the lifeboat.’
Volunteer helm, Andy Gunby, recently had the following advice, ‘Here at Abersoch we want to make sure your paddleboard experience is one you will remember for all the right reasons by taking some steps to stay safe, such as wearing a suitable floatation device and leash and always carrying a means of calling for help such as a fully charged mobile phone in a waterproof pouch’. He further advised ‘Check the weather forecast and tides and if you are in any doubt then don’t go out and ensure someone knows you are going out’.
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