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Respect the Water campaign warns of coastal dangers

Five people lost their lives around the Lincolnshire coast last year, and over 30 died around the coast of northern England, according to new figures from the RNLI. The charity is launching a Respect the Water campaign to warn about the dangers of the seaside. It's aiming to halve the number of coastal deaths by 2024.

Credit: RNLI/Dave Cocks

We're warning people that if they're going near the water, whatever their activity, they could be at risk and they need to take care. Unexpected dangers like slippery rocks, sudden waves or unstable ground can catch anyone out.

The water might look inviting, but it can be dangerously unpredictable, with hazards which can be fatal if not respected. Cold water is a major risk for anyone who ends up in the water - intentionally or otherwise. The body's reaction to sudden immersion in cold water will trigger uncontrollable gasping, which can draw water into the lungs and lead to drowning. The coldness will also gradually shut down the use of limbs, making it very difficult even for strong swimmers to stay afloat.

Currents under the surface can overwhelm even the strongest swimmers. They can drag people out of their depth so quickly, and if you try to swim against them you'll become exhausted.

We want people to enjoy the water but to make sure they respect it.

– Michael Avril, RNLI Community Incident Reduction Manager

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Man dies after being swept into sea at Scarborough

A man has died in hospital after he was swept out to sea near the Spa in Scarborough's South Bay.

North Yorkshire Police were called at around 6pm yesterday to a report of a man being knocked off the sea wall into the water .

The RNLI and Coastguard also attended the scene of the incident, with air support provided by RAF Leconfield.

An unconscious man was recovered from the water at around 6.40pm and taken to Scarborough District Hospital.

Despite the efforts of paramedics and hospital staff, he was pronounced deceased at hospital.

The man, who has not been named, was from Scarborough and in his thirties.

It is understood that the man was walking in the area with his dog and a friend when he got into difficulties.

The man’s friend was also taken to hospital suffering from shock and the effects of the cold, but has since been discharged.

A family who were walking nearby, raised the alarm with the emergency services.

Two people in hospital after Scarborough sea rescue

Two men were taken to hospital after they were rescued from the sea at Scarborough this evening.

The alarm was raised at 6pm when the Humber coastguard received a 999 call informing them that a person had been knocked off the sea wall at South Shore into the sea by a combination of gale force winds and high tides.

It is not known how the second man ended up in the sea but it is believed he went into to try and rescue the other person.

Both Scarborough RNLI lifeboats were scrambled to rescue the two men from the sea between the former swimming pool and the Spa.

The inshore lifeboat was launched in poor visibility at 6.10pm, followed 20 minutes later by the all-weather lifeboat.

It was at high tide, with a 4-5ft swell amplified by the backwash which made the search more difficult, despite the help of a spotlight from a Sea King helicopter from RAF Leaconfield.

Two coastguard teams , one from Scarborough and the other from Burniston, assisted with the search from the beach.

The two men were eventually rescued from the water and both were taken by ambulance to Scarborough General Hospital for treatment.

“We have very high tides at the moment and when you combine this with gale force winds you get very powerful waves.

"Whilst this can look spectacular we would ask people to please admire the force of nature at a distance.

"Breaking waves will knock you off your feet and are extremely dangerous for both you and the people who will be sent to rescue you.”

– Mike Puplett, Humber Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre

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RNLI promote January safety campaign

More fishermen die in January than in any other month of the year. That's the warning from lifeboat crews at the start of a new safety campaign to try to make fishing boats safer.

The RNLI says too many boat owners allow their vessels to become unstable - risking their lives and those of the people who may need to come to try and rescue them. James Webster has been to Bridlington to find out more:

Dawn of a new era for Scarborough's lifeboat

Scarborough's lifeboat has been launched this afternoon as part of a commemorative service for three crew members who died sixty years ago today.

Coxswain John Sheader, second coxswain John Cammish, and signalman Francis Bayes died when their lifeboat overturned as they tried to escort troubled fishing boats back to harbour in turbulent seas.

But today is also the start of a new era for Scarborough's lifeboat. Frazer Maude reports

Scarborough Lifeboathouse to be demolished

Scarborough RNLI is going afloat today to prepare for the demolition of the lifeboathouse.

The two lifeboats will be moored in the harbour while the lifeboathouse is demolished and a new one built.

Artists' impression of the new Scarborough lifeboathouse Credit: RNLI

Two temporary portacabins will be placed in a corner of the harbour for the crew to use as an office, changing rooms, etc.

Today's closure of the lifeboathouse coincides with the 60th anniversary of the capsize in 1954 of the lifeboat ECJR, near the harbour mouth while returning from service.

RNLI crewmembers from yesteryear Credit: RNLI

Coxswain Tom Clark and other RNLI personnel will mark the station closure with a short service beginning at 3pm to remember all those who have not returned to shore.

The lifeboat will launch for the final time from the lifeboathouse, which will soon be demolished and replaced. The crew will lay a wreath in the harbour mouth in memory of the three crew members who died in 1954: coxswain John Sheader, Francis Bayes and John Cammish.

A bagpiper will play a lament as one of the longest serving crew members, Peter Billingsley, lowers the RNLI flag. Everyone is welcome to attend.

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