Seahouses Lifeboats Online   RNLI The charity that saves lives at sea     The RNLI is a registered Charity No 209603

Seahouses RNLI Lifeboat Station

Seahouses RNLI Lifeboat Station, Seafield Road, Seahouses, Northumberland NE68 7SH. Tel: 01665 720370

RNLI SEA SAFETY PAGE

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In a Emergency,............                                         

In the U.K., it is the Maritime Coastguard Agency who co-ordinate a Marine Rescue.

BY PHONE - DIAL 999 AND ASK FOR THE COASTGUARD

BY MARINE RADIO - CALL on CHANNEL 16 (OR USE VHF DSC EQUIPMENT, IF FITTED TO YOUR VESSEL)

IF AT SEA, USE DISTRESS FLARES AS APPROPRIATE, IF NO OTHER MEANS OF RAISING THE ALARM ARE AVAILABLE. N.B. Mobile phones are of limited use at sea, the Coastguard and Lifeboats CANNOT use direction finding equipment to locate a mobile phone signal (AND YOU !), and mobile phone signals may be unreliable at sea. They can also affect your navigational and other electronic equipment

DO NOT TELEPHONE A LIFEBOAT STATION DIRECTLY - MOST ARE NOT CONTINUALLY STAFFED, AND CREW HAVE TO BE ALERTED BY THE COASTGUARD/LAUNCH AUTHORITY VIA THE RNLI PAGING SYSTEM.

Where crew are on station, they may be able to assist in an emergency, and can initiate an urgent call-out, but the preferred method is to contact the Coastguard direct, to ensure a co-ordinated and correctly resourced response. NEVER CALL A LIFEBOAT STATION WHICH IS BEING CALLED OUT, OR HAVE LIFEBOATS ON SERVICE, TO ENQUIRE ABOUT THE INCIDENT. YOUR CALL MAY BLOCK THE LINE REQUIRED FOR CASUALTY WORKING. Administrative calls cannot be handled while the Station is "On Service".

The RNLI provide free Water Safety Advice - Visit the RNLI Community Safety Lifesaving Website

SOME POINTS TO CONSIDER

  1. Make sure your vessel is sea worthy, you have adequate fuel for your trip, and basic tools. Spare fuses can be useful.
  2. Tell someone where you are going, when you are going, and when you expect to be back. If you tell the coastguard, remember to tell that when you get back, to avoid false alerts for overdue craft !
  3. Ensure you have lifejackets for all passengers. Have they been checked, if inflated by CO2, is the cylinder sound - make sure it has not been discharged, or rusty - if so replace.(Boat Chandlers will advise or ask at the Lifeboat Station if unsure)
  4. Carry appropriate flares for your craft and usage e.g. Inshore - Offshore etc (ensure they are in date, older ones may not work).
  5. A Marine VHF Radio either fixed or handheld is strongly recommended. Rescue services can fix your position by direction finding equipment, using Marine VHF Radio. You are also able to communicate directly with them and other vessels. MOBILE PHONES are better than nothing, but of limited use at sea. Direction Finders cannot lock onto phone signals, and the coverage may be patchy at sea. So if you are unsure of your exact position, without VHF Radio, you may take some finding !!
  6. Carry some warm and water proof clothing, some fresh water and food will be useful on a longer trip. Carry a torch for signalling after dark. It may be light when you set out, but not when you may need help !
  7. If your vessel has navigation lights, ensure they working.
  8. Carry a First Aid Kit.
  9. Check the weather forecast, talk to the local boatmen or harbour master if in doubt.
  10. Do not take unnecessary risks.
  11. Beware the effects of alcohol, it dehydrates, affects judgement, and can worsen the effects of seasickness.
  12. If the worst does happen - DO NOT PANIC.  Stay calm, do NOT delay in informing the Coastguard by radio (or phone as a last resort), if carried. Otherwise consider firing either red distress flares (Handheld if inshore, parachute flares if further out) or if daytime, fire an orange smoke flare.
  13. DO NOT use all your flares at once, give the emergency services time to react to you signal. If your think it has not been seen after a reasonable time - fire another. DO NOT FIRE PARACHUTE FLARES IF A HELICOPTER IS APPROACHING - THESE COULD ENDANGER THE AIRCRAFT.
  14. FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS OF THE LIFEBOAT HELMSMAN OR COXSWAIN, OR THE HELICOPTER PILOT. STAY CALM.
  15. I CAN ASSURE YOU, THE LIFEBOAT CREWS AND HELICOPTER WOULD SOONER COME TO YOUR ASSISTANCE WHILE IT WAS STILL JUST A MINOR DRAMA, RATHER THAN WAITING TILL IT BECAME FULL SCALE EMERGENCY. IF YOU HAVE A PROBLEM - GET SOME HELP OR ADVICE SOONER RATHER THAN LATER.
  16. THE SEA IS A POWERFUL ADVERSARY, AND SHOULD ALWAYS BE TREATED WITH RESPECT.

THIS IS NOT AN EXHAUSTIBLE LIST, BUT WITH A LITTLE PLANNING, YOU CAN STAY SAFE, AND IF YOU HAVE A PROBLEM, YOU WILL TAKE COMFORT IN THE FACT THAT YOU WERE ADEQUATELY EQUIPPED TO PREVENT A DRAMA BECOMING A CATASTROPHE.

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