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Friday, July 24, 2009

Successful North Wales rescue

This news reported by Owen R. Hughes in the Daily Post today:
Family rescued after boat capsizes off Gwynedd

A FAMILY of four on a fishing trip had their lives saved by a fast-acting lifeboat crew after their powerboat was capsized by a freak wave in rough seas.

The 14ft boat turned over in force five winds and crashing waves half a mile off Barmouth, Gwynedd, yesterday, throwing the two adults and their children, aged 11 and seven, into the choppy waters.

They were unable to right the boat and in just minutes the children started to suffer with hypothermia.

Luckily for the family, who were on holiday from Burnley, the capsize had been seen by sharp-eyed RNLI station mechanic Llew Griffin through a telescope.

He had been asked to keep a watch for the boat after Deputy Launching Authority John Puddle became concerned for their welfare.

He raised the alarm at 1.30pm and the Barmouth inshore boat was launched by tractor driver Jackie Thomas, with Mr Griffin and crew member Aaron Griffiths on board.

They fought the gusting wind to race to the stricken family and drag the four of them out the water. They were immediately wrapped in emergency foil bags to warm up.

Spokeswoman Jacqui Puddle said: “It soon became apparent that the two boys aged seven and 11 were suffering from hypothermia so the ambulance was called.

“The mother of the two boys was also in pain possibly from being stung by a jellyfish.”

Once back on the shore the boys were treated for hypothermia by paramedics but did not require hospital treatment.

The mother was also treated by the ambulance crew, one of which was also a Barmouth lifeboatman.

Spokeswoman Mrs Puddle said: “They were very lucky to be seen. The boys were already suffering hypothermia and the conditions very rough. They said the boat was hit by a big wave that I suspect hit them side on.

“The quick actions of the crew have saved their lives.”

John Probert, the Lifeboat Operations Manager at RNLI Barmouth Lifeboat Station, said: “Had it not been for the vigilance of one of our crew members and the quick reactions of the mechanic, the consequences of the fishing trip could have been far more serious.

“Before venturing onto the sea the state of the wind and the tide should always be taken into account.”

The last sentence is certainly a sound advice for any ventures out to sea to be fully aware of what the weather is in store. At any rate this is a wonderful successful rescue story to hear.

All the best to the family and most deserving appreciations to the RNLI (royal National Lifeboat Institution) crews.

By the way for us outsiders, Gwynedd (Welsh pronunciation: [ˈɡwɪnɛð]) is a county in north-west Wales of U.K. according to Wikipedia. Here's a picture of Tremadog bay in Gwynedd in Wales.


Freaque waves can appear any time and anywhere in the world. yes, even in beautiful tranquil place like this!

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