Beach safety this Summer

Schools are out and many West Country families are heading for the region's beaches. Here are some tips to stay safe this Summer.

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Statistics reveal children are at risk in the water

The RNLI and the Amateur Swimming Association are teaming up at Bude to launch a safe swimming initiative.

It comes after statistics revealed a high number of incidents where children were unsafe in the water.

  • 17% of parents say their child has got into difficulties in the water
  • 5% of parents say their child has been in a serious incident in the water
  • 21% of parents don't always supervise their children in the water
  • 9% of parents say their children can't swim
  • 21% of parents believe if their child can swim a length of a 25m pool they will be safe to swim in the water.

Swimming safety initiative launches in Bude today

Swimming safety initiative launches in Bude today
Credit: PA

A charity has teamed up with the RNLI to encourage people to be safe when swimming as children try to cool off.

The Amateur Swimming Association will be launching a water safety initiative in Bude today after it found that 17% of parents in the South West say their child has got into difficulties in water. This summer they'll be running courses to try to give children confidence when out in open water.


Lifeboat named after tragic Somerset teenager

A couple from Somerset, whose son took his own life as a student, are hoping to save dozens of lives in his name.

Chris and Debbie Rundle from Williton were determined to turn their son Toby's death into something positive.

They raised more than a £170,000 towards the cost of a new lifeboat, which took to the waters off Clovelly in North Devon for the first time this weekend.

Richard Lawrence reports:


Clovelly lifeboat is officially named

The newly named Atlantic class inshore lifeboat Toby Rundle took to the water of Clovelly on Saturday.

The lifeboat has been funded by a fundraising appeal started four years ago by the family and friends of Somerset student Toby Rundle.

More than £174,000 was raised towards the cost of the lifeboat in memory of Toby who died in 2009 as he was starting his third and final year of studies at Oxford University. He was the only son of journalists Chris and Debbie Rundle.

Crewed by RNLI volunteers, the Toby Rundle went into service officially on 6 May and on Saturday Philippa Rundle, Toby’s sister, officially named her in front of over a hundred of his close family and friends.

Lifeboat named in memory of Cornwall student

A lifeboat was officially named in Clovelly today in memory of a young student.

Family and friends raised £174,000 towards the cost of the lifeboat. Credit: RNLI

The 'Toby Rundle' went into service at the beginning of May, after friends and family raised nearly 2 hundred thousand pounds towards the cost. Today the boat was officially named by Toby's sister.

The boat was officially named by Toby's sister Philippa Credit: ITV News West Country

RNLI releases dramatic footage of speedboat rescue

The RNLI has released dramatic footage of the moment Teignmouth lifeboat crew stopped an out-of-control speedboat and rescued a man.

The man fell aboard from his speedboat earlier this month, knocking the throttle and putting the boat into a spin. The volunteer crew raced to the scene and managed to stop it. The man, who was wearing a lifejacket, was rescued and taken to hospital as a precaution.

The pictures, courtesy of the RNLI, show the moment the crew lasso the boat and manage to switch off its endless spiral.

Two men rescued from rocks in North Devon

Ilfracombe RNLI has saved two men cut off by the tide near Lee Bay in North Devon.

The men had been walking from Woody Bay to Lee Abbey as the tide was coming in. When they realised they were being cut off, they tried swimming but gave up and came ashore at Crock Point.

Coastguard teams began a cliff descent but it was decided to send in a member of the lifeboat crew, which was standing by. One of the team helped the pair on board the inshore lifeboat, which took them to Lee Bay where they were handed over to representatives from Lee Abbey.

Volunteer helmsman, Duncan Thomson says it is crucial that coastal walkers check the tide times.

It is important to remember that the Bristol Channel has one of the largest tidal ranges in the world, and a result of this is that many of the beaches and pathways that are available to walk on during low tide become completely covered as the tide comes in. If you intend to walk along the coast, please do check the state of the tide, and be aware that somewhere you were able to walk earlier in the day may not be available to you upon your return.

– Duncan Thomson, Helmsman, Ilfracombe RNLI
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