ON Wednesday (Jul 24) at 7.40pm, half way through New Quay RNLI’s training exercise, the D-class inshore lifeboat Audrey LJ was tasked by the Coastguard to a green kayak drifting off Cei Bach and a possible person in the water.
The lifeboat, with four crew members on board, was on scene within minutes. Dylan Price, New Quay RNLI Helm said, “We located the kayak with another person and established there was a 16 year old male missing in the water. We were given an estimated position and we did a search towards the beach.
“The casualty was spotted approximately one mile from the beach. We recovered the casualty onto the lifeboat and checked him over to establish there were no injuries. We then escorted the pair back to Cei Bach beach to be reunited with their family.”
The casualty’s mother said, “Our son was celebrating his 16th birthday so we went down to the beach with the kayaks. Within minutes he had paddled out so far he was just a dot in the distance. Then we could just about make out that he had capsized.
“As I was not there with him on the offset I had presumed and taken it for granted he would be wearing the buoyancy aid we had brought with us but he wasn’t. This has really bought it home to us that in any circumstance on the sea the importance of wearing one, and also to always have some means of communication to call for help.
“After we called the emergency services New Quay RNLI luckily came within minutes and rescued our son from the water. This was a really terrifying experience for us but one that could have been a lot worse if it were not for the speedy professional response and care from the New Quay lifeboat crew. We cannot express our gratitude enough and would like to say thank you so much.”
Roger Couch, New Quay RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager added, “This rescue could have been very different. Please remember to take the proper equipment when venturing out at sea on kayaks. Always wear a life jacket or buoyancy aid, take a means of calling for help, check the weather and tides, and always tell someone where you are going and when you will be back.”
Photo: Lisa Lan-Loft