THE new D class inshore lifeboat, named Frances Corscaden, will work alongside and compliment the station’s Trent class all-weather lifeboat. The D class lifeboat is a small, fast and very agile inflatable lifeboat and is known as the workhorse of the RNLI.

An RNLI Coast Review team visited Barry Dock Lifeboat Station in October 2017 to consult with the Operations Team and to evaluate local lifesaving trends and historic incident data. The data recognised the significant contribution a D class lifeboat at Barry Dock would make to sea safety around the Vale of Glamorgan coastline.

The D class has already been used on several occasions in recent weeks. The D class’ first call-out was to rescue two swimmers in difficulty off Nell’s Point in Barry Island. Both of the station’s lifeboats were deployed on 15 June to reports of four swimmers in trouble. Thanks to the inshore lifeboat’s ability to operate in surf and shallow water, the D class was able to quickly recover two of the swimmers as the remaining two made their way back to shore.

The D class lifeboat carries a volunteer crew of four and is capable of speeds up to 25 knots. She is equipped with ship-to-shore communications; GPS; First Aid equipment including oxygen and can also transport patients on a stretcher. Fourteen of the station’s volunteer lifeboat crew have been trained in operating the new inshore lifeboat.

The lifeboat was funded by a legacy left by Miss Oonagh Corscaden from West Sussex. Miss Corscaden left a legacy to the RNLI shortly after her sister Moyra passed away in 2014. Moyra had wanted to leave a legacy to name a lifeboat in memory of her mother Frances Mary Corscaden. With the additional legacy received from Oonagh’s estate the RNLI were able to honour the sibling’s wishes.

Credit: RNLI Nicholas Leach

Martin Bowmer, Barry Dock lifeboat Coxswain said:

‘Barry Dock RNLI volunteers are delighted to welcome and accept the new D class lifeboat on station in May 2019. The Frances Corscaden has already improved our ability to respond quickly and flexibly to incidents around the coast of the Vale of Glamorgan. As a station we have invested heavily in upskilling 14 of our volunteer crew with the knowledge and equipment needed to man the inshore lifeboat safely and quickly so that we respond to those in trouble at sea at all times of the day and night.’

With the majority of schools breaking up for the summer this Friday the RNLI are urging the public to Respect the Water over the summer holidays. If you find yourself unexpectedly in cold water try and fight your instincts to fight the water; instead float on your back and wait for the effects of cold water shock to pass. Once your body has acclimatized to the water temperature, call for help. If you see others in trouble please don’t attempt the rescue yourself, call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.

For more information about leaving a gift to the RNLI in your Will visit rnli.org/support-us/give-money/leave-a-gift-in-your-will call 0300 300 0124 (UK) or 1800 360 258 (Ireland) or email: legacy_enquiry@rnli.org.uk