All Weather Mersey Lifeboat 12-24 “Lil Cunningham” – Services 2007


Our station boat returned from repairs from Conwy Marina on 23/10/2007. The relief lifeboat 12-001 was taken to Conwy Marina to be lifted out and returned to South division.


Relief Lifeboat 12-001 “Peggy and Alex Caird” Mersey class

15/10/2007. 2235
Holyhead coastguard received 3 separate reports of a red parachute flare out to sea between Rhyl and Llandudno. Both Llandudno and Rhyl AWB’s were launched and searched up to a mile offshore between Colwyn Bay and Rhyl. The search continued for about 90 minutes, but nothing was found using radar and night-vision equipment, and the boats’ own white parachute flares. The search was then called off, and Rhyl AWB returned to station at 0100.


13/10/2007. 1647
Holyhead coastguard received a MAYDAY call from the 30-foot fishing trawler “Solidarity”, which was on passage from the River Dee to Aberystwyth, and had suffered total engine failure 2.5 miles off Abergele. The AWB was launched and located the casualty by radio direction-finding. The lifeboat mechanic tried to fix the engine problem but there was a major fault, and so the boat was towed back to Rhyl harbour. As there was insufficient water in the harbour, the lifeboat and casualty were anchored off Rhyl for some time, and then the tow was re-commenced and the “Solidarity” was placed on a mooring in Rhyl harbour. The AWB was back on station by 0100.
solidarity


6/10/2007. 1325
Numerous people contacted Holyhead coastguard reporting 2 children in an inflatable, in difficulty, off the end perch marker at Rhyl harbour entrance. The ILB was launched, followed by the ALB. Nothing in the immediate area was found, and so the search was widened, including Rhyl coastguard team. the units searched for 3 hours, but nothing was found, and the boats returned to the boathouse at 1600. Classed as false alarm with good intent.


Our station boat “Lil Cunningham” suffered a major failure of the port engine whilst on service on 28/9/2007 and was taken to TLC yard in Conwy for repair. Relief Mersey lifeboat “Peggy and Alex Caird” 12-001 was put on station whilst repairs were carried out.


Rhyl Lifeboat 12-24 “Lil Cunningham” Mersey class

28/9/2007. 1224
AWB requested by Holyhead Coastguard to launch 2 a small boat with 2 people on board, reported in difficulty off Llanddulas. The windfarm support vessel “Fast Cat” was also in the area, and they proceeded and came up on the boat first. the boat had launched from Rhos-On-Sea earlier but could not make headway in the North-West force 5 wind. the Lifeboat was just getting on scene when the port engine developed a serious fault, and reduced the speed of the lifeboat to 8 knots. the “Fast Cat” took the boat in tow and secured it to a mooring in Rhos Harbour. Holyhead Coastguards requested Rhyl and Llandudno coastguards to keep a watch on the men on the boat to see if they were OK until the tide went out sufficiently for them to recover their craft. “Fast Cat” proceeded to Conwy marina, and the lifeboat limped back to Rhyl, being recarriaged at 1510. A relief lifeboat will be brought from Poole headquarters by Road to allow the Rhyl boat to go for repairs.


12/8/2007. 2117
The crew of the were called out to assist Llandudno lifeboat in a search for a man who had threatened suicide, between Colwyn Bay Pier and Llanddulas. The coastguard teams from Llandudno and Rhyl were already searching the shoreline, together with Llandudno’s inshore lifeboat crew. Due to the failing light, the assistance of Llandudno and Rhyl offshore lifeboats were requested, to assist with illumination and searching from the sea. All units carried out a comprehensive search of the foreshore, including around the “Dollis” stone blocks which protect the shore at Llanddulas. Nothing was found, and the search was scaled down at 11.45. As the crews were recovering the boats, the co-ordinating officer at Holyhead Coastguard informed all units that the man had gone to the promenade at Colwyn Bay (after all units had gone) and proceeded to drive his vehicle into the sea near Colwyn Bay pier. He was eventually pulled from the sea by local police and paramedic crews. Rhyl’s crew finally returned to their homes at 12.45am.


10/8/2007. 1959
AWB put to immediate readiness to assist ILB in sea search for 3 missing boys in fading light . Boys were found as crew were preparing to go down the beach, all units stood down, the boat being back in the boathouse by 2015.


3/8/2007. 1321
AWB launched to assist small day boat with 2 people on board, who were having difficulty in the surf off Towyn, and the boat was getting swamped. On arrival, the ILB crew assisted the boat through the surf until they were safe ashore. The boat was returning to Rhyl, and had just got about 10 metres from the beach, when the Operations manager saw a kayak going out to sea from the harbour at….

1529
The AWB proceeded to the spot, and recovered the kayak with no-one on board. A man had been seen on the kayak previously, and so the ILB was requested to go close to shore. The man had made it ashore and contacted the ILB crew to confirm all was well. The AWB and ILB then returned to station with the kayak on board. The boats returned to station at 1630.


1/8/2007. 2017
Coastguards from Rhyl; both of Rhyl’s volunteer RNLI lifeboats; and the rescue helicopter from RAF Valley were involved in a shoreline and offshore search for a missing swimmer off Rhyl . The alarm was raised by another person who had also gone for a swim, apparently to try to swim to the offshore windfarm. This man had returned to shore after 40 minutes, and his friend was no longer to be seen. Local coastguard teams from Rhyl searched the shoreline between Rhyl harbour and Point of Air; and the lifeboats and helicopter searched up to 2 miles offshore; but nothing was found. The search was called off just before midnight, after some 3.5 hours of searching.

The actual location as to where the men were swimming was very vague, and so the search covered quite an extensive area, the whole operation being co-ordinated by the Coastguard centre at Holyhead. All that was known was that the pair had set off from Rhyl beach by the Suncentre to go to the windfarm. All units were stood down just before midnight.


23/7/2007. 1956
AWB put on standby to back-up the ILB assisting the fishing vessel “Olivia Jeanne” with steering failure, coming in to Rhyl Harbour. The ILB crew managed to cope and the AWB was stood down at 2030.


22/7/2007. 1439
Rhyl beach guards in Prestatyn, requested Rhyl coastguard team attend their position to observe a small rigid inflatable which seemed to be drifting about 1.5 miles out from the Nova Centre. The coastguard team reported to Holyhead coastguard that the boat was apparently unoccupied, but there were rods off the back. The boathouse was contacted, and as the boat was reported in the shipping lane to Mostyn, the AWB was launched. On coming alongside the boat some 18 minutes later, it was found there was 1 occupant who had been sleeping in the bottom of the boat, and had not realised his anchor was not holding. He was checked out and appeared OK, so the AWB left, and the man returned to the shore at Barkby beach. The AWB was back at Rhyl at 1540.


10/7/2007. 2042
AWB crew paged for immediate readiness as the Douglas complex gas and oil installation, 12 miles offshore, had declared a full emergency. The crew mustered and kitted up but were told to stand down at 2110. The boat was put back in the boathouse and the incident classed as a standby.


1/7/2007. 2155
Both boats were launched after Holyhead coastguard received a phone call from 2 women at Sandy Cove, reporting their men folk were 1 hour overdue from a kayaking trip. The boats were launched and commenced a search to the West of the station. Rhyl coastguard team were also tasked. it was the coastguard team that spotted the 2 men about a quarter of a mile off Kinmel Bay and directed the lifeboats to them. They had struggled against wind and tide and were still over 1 mile from their destination as darkness came in rapidly. The men were advised to head for the beach and walk back, but were adamant they would continue. After another half hour, they had only progressed about 100 metres, and so they were told to go to the beach to the waiting coastguard officers. The boats were then released and returned to station at 2300.


25/6/2007. 0000
AWB put on standby to assist ILB and police units in searching for a suicidal male. Stood down at 0018. See ILB page for more details.


12/6/2007. 0952
AWB brought to immediate readiness to back up ILB after reports of a woman going to commit suicide at the Nova beach, Prestatyn. The ILB arrived on scene and officers ashore informed the coastguard that the woman was safe ashore, being found in the sand dunes. The AWB was stood down, classed as standby.

1357
AWB requested to back up ILB after reports of people ashore reporting a man in difficulty off Prestatyn . The AWB was just at the water’s edge when it was reported again the person was safe ashore. The AWB was stood down and returned to the boathouse at 1410.Classed as standby.


10/6/2007. 2323
Both boats launched after reports of a woman entering the water in a suicide attempt somewhere off the west promenade off Rhyl. Local coastguards and police were already out, and the boats were requested as back-up. After searching the area off the skytower for about 15 minutes, the police confirmed the woman was now safe ashore and in their custody, so all units were stood down, the boats returning to station by 0035.


21/4/2007. 1441
Whilst both ILB and AWB were on exercise, Holyhead coastguard received a 999 call from a person in Winkups camp, Sandy Cove, saying they could see a lime green boat about 2 miles out. initial reaction was it was the Kinmel Bay outer sewer buoy, but Holyhead asked the AWB to go to the outer buoy, and the ILB to the inner buoy. When the boats were at each buoy, the first informant confirmed what she had seen was the buoy that the AWB was alongside, so all units were stood down end returned to the exercise at 1502..


17/4/2007. 1338
AWB brought to immediate readiness at the water’s edge to back up ILB going to a swimmer off the Nova centre, Prestatyn. the man made it ashore unaided, and so the AWB was stood down at 1400. Classed as standby.


15/4/2007. 1359
Both the ILB and AWB were requested to search for 2 jet skis and a small speedboat, with 5 persons in total, who had set out from Barkby beach Prestatyn, to go to the windfarm. A thick sea mist had come down, and as the party had no compass, flares or VHF radio, they phoned the coastguard to say they had been going in the mist for 1/2 an hour, but couldn’t find land. Rhyl coastguard team was also mobilised, as was spare crew in the station’s LandRover, to search the shoreline. The party had said they could hear the signal from the windfarm meteorological mast. Unfortunately, there were 2 met masts either side of the windfarm, and so after 2 hours, Holyhead decided to launch Llandudno and Hoylake lifeboats, and also the Rescue 122 helicopter from RAF Valley, Anglesey. Also involved in the search were support craft from the windfarm, also local charter fishing boats. The crew of Rhyl’s All-weather lifeboat were in touch with the party by mobile phone, asking if they could hear the lifeboat’s horn, but to no avail. As the helicopter was flying over the jetties a Llanddulas, the party phoned Holyhead coastguard to say that they could hear the helicopter. The Helicopter crew stopped and hovered, hoping the jet ski party could go to them, but this didn’t happen. The helicopter was some 5 miles west of the windfarm at the time. The Rhyl lifeboats diverted to the helicopter’s position, using radar to locate the machine, and then a small area search revealed 2 “Blips” on the radar of the all-weather lifeboat. the helicopter was diverted to this position, just as the Inshore lifeboat also got there. The 2 children with the party were cold and wet after falling in the sea earlier, and all 5 were taken on board the lifeboat. aided by the ILB crew. The eldest man was put on oxygen as he was not feeling too well, and the 2 lads were wrapped up warm, all in the party having a welcome warm drink, as they had been stranded for 5 hours by now, as the jet boat had broken down. One of the ILB crew got on to the jet ski which was OK, and the other jet ski was towed by the Inshore Lifeboat, with the big boat towing in the speed boat. They reached Rhyl about 1900 and the craft were taken to the boathouse and the party were check over by ambulance personnel, but all declared Ok after their ordeal. The boats were ready for service by 1950.The party were duly admonished for not having a compass and flares and a VHF radio, by local coastguards. See pictures on the “rescues” part of the gallery via the Rhyl page on the RNLI website.


28/3/2007. 1846
Both boats, together with coastguard teams from Rhyl and Llandudno, were tasked to search offshore and shoreline between Abergele and Colwyn Bay after Holyhead coastguard received numerous reports of a red flare off Pensarn beach. The teams had been on scene an searching for about an hour, when the coastguards were approached by a police patrol, who had found a red parachute flare canister, still warm, near the woods by Gwyrch castle, about 1/2 mile inshore from Abergele. It was believed, therefore, that the flare was fired from land, and, with nothing sighted, all units were stood down. the lifeboats returned to station by 2045.


3/2/2007. 1737
The crews were alerted at 6.30pm on Saturday 3rd February, to go to the aid of a person on board the angling boat “Crusader” who had grounded his boat at Talacre, and was stranded by the ebbing tide. The crew were just about to attend their annual crew dinner. Both Rhyl’s ILB and AWB were launched. Rhyl’s Coastguard team were also alerted Visibility was less than 30 metres, and progress was slow as the lifeboats were continuously going into shallow waters to find the vessel and it’s owner. At the same time, the coastguard learned that up to 70 shore fishermen in a fishing competition; and up to 20 other fishermen; were also lost in the fog between Prestatyn and Talacre. Extra coastguards were brought in, and Hoylake’s AWB was also launched to search from the East.
After arriving on scene, the crew on Rhyl’s AWB heard shouts for help from the shore. The crew launched the small inflatable from the all-weather lifeboat, and rowed ashore to a single fisherman who had been bait digging, and was lost. About 250 metres down the beach, 2 more fishermen were heard, and they were brought to the AWB by the ILB. Hoylake’s crew managed to find the owner of the “Crusader”, just east of Talacre lighthouse. He was taken on board their boat. The “Crusader” was now high and dry, but the incoming tide was threatening to take the boat away. The owner was transferred to Rhyl from Hoylake , and both Rhyl’s boats stood by until the ILB crew could re-float it. It was then escorted to Prestatyn Sailing club and recovered. Rhyl’s crews returned to station at 1.30am on Sunday, being at sea for over 7 hours.

At the same time, the volunteer coastguards from Rhyl and Flint managed to assist over 70 fishermen to safety from the beaches between Prestatyn and Mostyn, all persons being accounted for. Llandudno’s AWB was also launched to search for an emergency beacon, somewhere between Rhyl and Abergele, but nothing was found. The beacon was found later, 6 miles inland from Rhyl, in a farmyard.

Unfortunately, the annual dinner was only attended by the crew’s wives and guests !!

The “Crusader” and the angling party have been classed as 2 separate services for the records.


14/1/2007. 1047
Both boats requested to assist search for an elderly lady who was last seen at the closed end of Colwyn Bay pier the night before and had not been seen after. RAF rescue 122 helicopter was already searching. As the crew were at the boathouse for a normal Sunday meeting, the boats were at sea within 8 minutes. After searching for over an hour, the coastguard scaled down the search and all units were recovered, it was over 10 hours since the woman was last seen. The boats returned to station by 1300.


9/1/2007. 0248
Both boats requested to launch to search Rhyl shoreline for a young male involved in a domestic dispute and going into the sea. As the crew were kitting up, North Wales Police informed the station that the man had come out of the water and was in police custody. Both boats stood down and ready for service by 0300.Classed as standby.


8/1/2007. 1335
The station mechanic was contacted by a person associated with the offshore windfarms that the 11 metre RIB “Viking Surveyor” had engine problems in the River Dee estuary near to Talacre. Flint ILB had been tasked to the incident. The Operations manager was informed and the crew were brought to Immediate readiness to assist the Flint crew. Just after launching, Liverpool coastguard contacted the AWB to say they were launching Hoylake Lifeboat, and Rhyl could stand down.. The AWB returned to station by 1445.

Subscribe to Rhyl RNLI via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to Rhyl RNLI and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 64 other subscribers