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Lives potentially put at risk after rescue boat engine stolen

A vital boat engine was stolen from the RNLI Credit: PA

Lives were potentially put at risk in Devon after a vital part of a rescue boat was taken from an RNLI storage unit.

The unit at Bigbury-on-Sea was locked by lifeguards who finished their beach patrols at 6pm. It's believed it was then broken into around 11pm.

"We take great pride in our work and the equipment we use to keep beachgoers around the coast safe.

Our inshore rescue boats allow our lifeguards to respond quickly to rescue people in trouble at sea and it’s a real shame that the engine to this vital piece of kit has been taken.

Thankfully we’ve been able to keep our inshore rescue boat on service and our patrols have not been affected. We’d like to thank the local community for all of their support."

– Rebecca Fox, Lifeguard Supervisor for the South Hams

The charity’s lifeguards across the south west dealt with 7,982 incidents, assisting 10,080 people in 2017.


Which South West beaches have lifeguards this half-term?

Lifeguards are back patrolling some of our beaches for the half-term break. Credit: PA

People heading to the coasts of Devon and Cornwall this half-term break are being urged to visit a lifeguarded beach.

The RNLI says they're put in extra lifeguards on patrol along some of the busiest beaches.


  • Porthtowan
  • Perranporth
  • Praa Sands
  • Gwithian
  • Porthmeor
  • Sennen
  • Fistral
  • Watergate Bay
  • Towan and Mawgan Porth
  • Polzeath
  • Widemouth
  • Summerleaze


  • Croyde
  • Woolacombe
  • Bantham

The RNLI says people should not enter the water if they see someone in trouble, but call 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard. If you have something that floats, throw it to them.


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