28/12/2006. 2120
North Wales police requested the assistance of coastguard and both of the lifeboats to search for a woman threatening to commit suicide somewhere between Rhyl and Prestatyn. The police helicopter NW1 was also used. The woman had rung her relatives in the West Midlands saying she was going to kill herself in the water. A sweep of the shoreline for 3 miles, including out to sea for 1 mile, using infra-red and night-vision glasses, found nothing. After about 90 minutes searching, it was found that West Midlands police were unsure the woman had actually left her home area, and all units were stood down., the lifeboats returning to station by 11.30 pm.

2/12/2006. 1530
The skipper of a 4-metre length RIB (Rigid Inflatable Boat) phoned 999 to Holyhead Coastguard to report he had engine problems 3/4 mile off Llanddulas Jetty, between Abergele and Colwyn Bay. The AWB was launched and came alongside the boat with 2 people on board, about 1/2 mile off the other Jetty off Raynes Quarry, as a coaster was about to go past them to the jetty. The boat was taken in tow and the 2 people were taken on board the lifeboat to warm up, whilst the lifeboat mechanic managed to re-start the outboard using a bit of rocket line. The boat was towed to Rhos-on Sea slipway, and the crew got back on board the RIB, to get ashore, escorted by the AWB, where Rhyl coastguards helped them get ashore safely, to return over 100 miles to Nottingham that same evening ! The AWB was returning to station when…

Holyhead Coastguard received a report of a 14-year old male going into the water off Splash Point, Rhyl. The ILB was also requested, and the AWB made speed to Rhyl. The Landrover and both launching tractors were utilised to assist Rhyl coastguard search the shoreline. As both boats were searching the area, North Wales Police managed to contact the person, who was safe ashore now, and all was well. All units returned to station at 1910.

12/11/2006. 0328
ILB initially paged, but as the wind was Westerly force 7-8, with heavy surf and rough seas, the AWB was paged to search for a 33-year old male who had allegedly entered the sea in a suicide attempt after a domestic argument. The AWB launched at 0335 and immediately was hit by 2 large waves, which knocked the life-ring off the bracket off the stern of the boat. As the AWB reached the scene, the coastguard was told by police that the man was out of the water. The AWB was then told to return to station. This was done, retrieving the life-ring with some difficulty due to 2-3 meter dumping surf, but the boat was back on the beach by 0415. The Casualty was found by police safe ashore and taken into custody.

5/11/2006. 0024
ILB launch requested to assist police search for young woman, threatening suicide, off Beaches hotel, Prestatyn. As conditions were poor, the AWB was requested to back up with illumination. The police helicopter was not available to start with. Rhyl coastguard team were also mobilised. the woman had said she was in the water, then phoned police to say she was in the sand dunes. She kept switching her phone off after every call. The ILB and AWB fired white parachute flares to illuminate the area, but nothing was found. After about 1 hour, the woman phones police to say she was on a bridge. At this time, the police helicopter arrived, and the AWB suggested that the helicopter search the golf links behind the dunes, as there were bridges over streams on the course. Eventually a police patrol went to the club house, and found the woman nearby. All sea units were then recalled, the ILB returning at 0204, with the AWB at 0225.

28/10/2006. 1830
AWB standby to back-up ILB on service to 3 people cut off by tide at Prestatyn. AWB not required as people made way safely ashore. Stood down 1845.

3/10/2006. 1807
Holyhead coastguard had received numerous 999 calls regarding the yacht “Times Two”, which had been waiting for enough water in the River Clwyd to get into Rhyl harbour. The crew of 2 were running the boat fairly close to the shore line, and persons on shore were concerned they might run aground on the sandbanks. The crew were assembled, and a maroon rocket was fired over the yacht in an attempt to get the 2 crew to take the boat further out to sea. To prevent any possible grounding, the coastguard requested the Offshore lifeboat to launch, to stand by the yacht. After the AWB had launched and proceeded to scene, the yacht crew found there was sufficient water in the river for them to get into the harbour, and so the AWB followed the yacht in. Once it was seen that all was well, the AWB returned to station by 1858.

28/8/2006. 1855
AWB crew paged to back-up ILB crew launching to 2 females in difficulty off the Nova centre. AWB requested to launch as weather conditions were just on the limit for the ILB, wind north-west 7, heavy surf. As the AWB was just getting to the water’s edge (it was low water, so tide was nearly 1 mile out), it was learned from Holyhead coastguard that all persons were accounted for and safe ashore, so the AWB launch was aborted, the boat getting back to station by 1920. Classed as standby.

12/8/2006. 0128
Holyhead coastguard requested launch of AWB to assist police in search for person believed to be in sea off the Seaquarium on Rhyl promenade. It was nearly high water and there was a heavy dumping, breaking surf near the shoreline. It was too rough for the ILB and so the AWB launched to assist NW1 (police helicopter) in search. Rhyl coastguard team also deployed. 3 females were found at the waters’ edge, but were discounted as the first informant said the person was way out to sea. After about 1.5 hours searching with nothing found, the search was called off, and Holyhead coastguard informed all partied that this was a suspected hoax, as the first informant had been recognised by local police officers, and had called the emergency services out to false alarms on previous occasions. The AWB had to wait in Rhyl harbour for there to be sufficient beach to recover, and was rehoused at 0330.

10/8/2006. 1208
AWB launched to assist ILB in escorting yacht “Sarah 2” into harbour after the crew of 2 encountered rough seas off Kinmel Bay, on a passage from Rhos on Sea. The ILB stood by alongside and the AWB remained on station astern of the yacht until it was safely moored in Rhyl harbour. The AWB was released at 1330.

The AWB was requested to put back to sea t escort another yacht “Magic”, which had been sailing with “Sarah” and now seemed to require assistance with getting into Rhyl harbour. The AWB stayed on close station with the yacht, which had been under the watchful eye of the windfarm survey vessel “Offshore Provider” whilst the initial yacht was being escorted. Once both boats were safely moored, the AWB returned to station by about 1420.

It should be noted that allegedly these 2 craft with 2 people on board each of the boats, were asked by the coastguard not to attempt the passage due to the rough conditions, but they went anyway.

Many thanks to Dylan of Rhyl Beach guards, who took these photos with his mobile phone.

31/7/2006. 2058
Both boats brought to immediate readiness after Holyhead coastguard and Liverpool coastguard received reports of a white flare over Point-of-Air, NW1, the police helicopter, and Rhyl coastguard mobile was already on scene searching. The helicopter used its infra-red vision to search up to 1 mile out (they had received reports of a possible downed aircraft). Rhyl coastguard mobile went to higher ground to look out as well. They then returned to the beach and fired 1 white parachute flare whilst Holyhead coastguard was talking to the first informant. From the direction of this flare, the informant stated that the other flare they had seen was well inside the coastguard’s one, and so it was assumed the flare was fired from the land. All units were stood down at 2150.

25/7/2006. 0013
AWB requested to back-up ILB in search for male adult believed to be either in a small inflatable, or swimming, off Robin Hood holiday camp, Rhyl. People had phoned 999 to report they had seen a child at the water’s edge shouting for her daddy. Police officers and Rhyl coastguard team were also on scene. The AWB crew used night-sights and white parachute flares to illuminate the area. The rescue helicopter from RAF Valley, Anglesey, was also used after 2 hours to use its FLIR (forward-looking infra-red) vision. Nothing was found, and the first informants were adamant they had heard the child crying. the search was called off at 0400 after nothing was found, and the AWB returned to station at 0430.

12/7/2006. 1424
AWB launched to assist ILB in searching for 3m inflatable dinghy with 2 persons on board, off Presthaven Sands camp, Prestatyn. Dinghy was found by ILB 1.5 miles out, with 2 men in it. ILB returned persons and dinghy to shore and AWB returned to station by 1550. See ILB page for more detailed reports.

3/7/2006. 1632
AWB launched to assist ILB with tow of yacht “Sheldrake” back to Rhyl, after it lost power off Prestatyn. This was the same yacht which was found drifting 9 miles out on 10th June. The 3 crew were taken on board and the yacht was towed back to a mooring in Rhyl harbour. The AWB was back on station at 1800.

2/7/2006. 1136
AWB requested to launch to assist Llandudno ILB searching for a broken-down speedboat with 3 persons on board, unsure of their whereabouts, somewhere off Rhos on Sea. The AWB was asked by Holyhead Coastguard to try to DF (direction-find) the casualty. The crew were already doing that as the boat was being taken to the water’s edge. The direction showed the boat to be somewhere to the west. Just after the AWB had launched, Llandudno ILB announced they had found the boat 3.5 miles to the East of Rhos on sea, and they were towing it back to Rhos. The AWB was released and returned to station by 1155.

18/6/2006. 1111
The skipper of the local fishing vessel “Olivia Jeanne” reported to Holyhead coastguard that he had a sick person on his boat, who had been violently ill. The AWB was launched and took 30 minutes to get on scene, some 8 miles north of Rhyl. The man was taken on board and given water to help his sea sickness, and he started to revive once on board the lifeboat. He was back on the beach some 40 minutes later, and after being checked over by ambulance paramedics, was allowed to return to his home for some rest. The AWB was back on station by 1330.

16/6/2006. 0150
ILB and AWB launched to search for a male stranded by the tide off Prestatyn. The ILB had recovered the man, in an unconscious state, into the ILB, which then came alongside the AWB to transfer an additional crew member to assist with getting the ILB over shallow sandbanks to shore. Once the casualty was in the hands of the coastguards, and then to an ambulance, both boats returned to Rhyl. Due to the state of the tide (high water – right up to the promenade), it was not possible to recover the AWB until there was sufficient sand to recover the boat. This was done by 0330 and the AWB was in station just after 0400.

13/6/2006. 0048
Both ILB and AWB were launched to assist police and coastguards search Rhyl harbour for a male allegedly committing suicide. The ILB searched around the boats and under the road bridge, and the AWB searched the harbour mouth using night vision glasses. Nothing was found after about 45 minutes, and the units were told to return to station. as the boats were returning, the coastguards located the man very inebriated, sitting on the beach halfway between the harbour and the boathouse. Police officers took him into custody, and all units returned to station by 0215.

The local fishing fleet had noticed a 22-foot yacht “Sheldrake” drifting past them, about 8 miles north of Rhyl. They reported it to the coastguard and the AWB was requested as the yacht was drifting in the shipping lanes, not far off the gas rig. The AWB came alongside the yacht after 40 minutes, and 2 crew were put aboard it. A tow was established back towards Rhyl as it was not known where the yacht was from. It looked as if the mooring line had parted.

Whilst the AWB was towing the yacht back to Rhyl, the skipper of the local fishing boat “Osprey” reported he had a sick angler on board who needed to get ashore. The AWB was about 1 mile away, and so headed for the “Osprey”. The AWB went alongside and took off the sick man. He was given first aid and a small amount of oxygen and soon revived on the lifeboat. The tow then re-commenced and the yacht was left at anchor off Rhyl for the ILB to take into the harbour when there was sufficient water. The AWB returned to the beach and was back on station by 1645. The angler was fine when back on dry land, and he decided to walk back along the promenade to meet his mates when they arrived back in Rhyl some 3 hours later.

AWB requested to back up ILB searching in dark for possible occupants of an inflatable dinghy found upturned off Prestatyn. A search of 1 hour found nothing, and irt was assumed that this dinghy was one of those blown unoccupied offshore in the afternoon, and the wind had now turned. The AWB was back at Rhyl by 2345 and ready for service by 0020.

5/4/2006. 1528
Both boats requested to launch after a member of the public on the promenade in Rhyl, lost sight of a man in a small kayak, who seemed to be paddling out to the windfarm (4 miles out). The sea was very choppy with a North west wind of over 20 knots. The police helicopter (NW1) was also tasked. The ILB searched up to 1/2 mile out between Rhyl and Prestatyn, and the AWB searched the offshore part between the windfarm and the shore. The AWB was returning from the windfarm when NW1 reported spotting the man in the kayak about 2 miles out from Splash Point, Rhyl. The AWB and ILB proceeded to the scene, and came alongside the kayak. The occupant was well equipped for the kayak, but had no radio, and had not reported to the Coastguard that he was going out to sea . The procedure was told to the man by the coxswain, but the man took it all very light-heartedly, but conceded that the weather conditions were not the best for his type of craft, and he was escorted back to the shore by both lifeboats, where Rhyl coastguards were waiting for him to take details and advise him on health and safety at sea. Both lifeboats returned to station and were ready for service by 1920

7/2/2006. 2114
AWB brought to immediate readiness to back up ILB to suspected suicide on Rhyl beach. Wind was gusting up to 40 knots Westerly. As crew were getting boat ready, information came back that woman had been found. AWB stood down at 2120.

22/1/2006. 1345
Both ILB and AWB were launched after a member of the public approached Rhyl’s mobile coastguard patrol on Prestatyn promenade, and showed them a bag and clothing near the water’s edge off the Nova centre. NW1, the police helicopter; and local police patrols were also on scene. All units searched the shoreline and up to 1 mile out for about 1 hour, and the police decided the bag was an overnight bag, and as no-one was reported missing, the search was terminated, the lifeboats returning to station at1630.