Cries for help

Date: Sunday 19 July 2020

Location: Penryn River between Greenbank and Little Falmouth

Weather: SW 2, Calm Sea and No Swell, Fair Visibility, Overcast with Drizzle

All weather lifeboat: (Launched 01:14 / Returned 02:12) – Carl Beardmore (Deputy 2nd Coxswain), Dave Nicoll, Sandy Procter, Tamsin Mulcahy, Andy Edwards, Caden Harris, Jemima Henstridge-Blows

Inshore lifeboat: (Launched 01:03 / Returned 02:30) – Neil Capper (Helmsman), Nick Head, Tamara Brookes, Joe Amps


At 00:55 Falmouth Coastguard requested that Falmouth Inshore Lifeboat be launched following reports of cries for help coming from the Penryn River between Greenbank and Little Falmouth. The Falmouth Coastguard Cliff Rescue Team was also tasked to assist.

The Inshore Lifeboat launched from her slipway at 01:03 and headed up Falmouth Inner Harbour and into Penryn River. At 01:14 the Inshore Lifeboat located the casualty on the island pontoon off Little Falmouth. The casualty had been recovered from the water by a member of the public and two of the volunteer lifeboat crew were placed onto the pontoon to provide casualty care.

At 01:14 the All Weather Lifeboat was requested to launch to provide additional support and left its pontoon berth at 01:20 with a doctor on board who is one of the lifeboat volunteer crew. The All Weather Lifeboat arrived on scene at 01:30 and moored alongside the pontoon to provide additional medical support. The casualty was transferred to the All Weather Lifeboat and at 01:40 both lifeboats headed back down the Penryn River towards Prince of Wales Pier where an ambulance was waiting. By 02:06 the casualty had been landed ashore into the care of the Ambulance Paramedics and the All Weather Lifeboat was released to return to its station. The Inshore Lifeboat was requested to return to the original scene to check on the casualty’s vessel and at 02:21 having ensured that the yacht and its tender were secure the Inshore Lifeboat was also released to return to station.

The All Weather Lifeboat was back alongside its pontoon berth at 02:12, with the Inshore Lifeboat being recovered onto its slipway at 02:30, with both lifeboats being refuelled and made ready for service by 03:00.

The casualty had been returning to their moored yacht in its tender when it appears, they fell into the water. Luckily several people heard the casualties cries for help and one member of the public had the presence of mind to launch their paddle board and cross the river where they were able to drag the casualty onto the pontoon island. Without their actions the outcome of this incident could have been significantly different, helping to save this casualties life.

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