Littlehampton lifeboat called to ‘child drifting in the sea’

Littlehampton's RNLI lifeboat crews had a busy weekend. File picture courtesy of Littlehampton RNLI
Littlehampton's RNLI lifeboat crews had a busy weekend. File picture courtesy of Littlehampton RNLI

Littlehampton’s RNLI volunteers were called to three incidents over the weekend, including a report of a child drifting in the sea.

The first was shortly after 2pm on Saturday, a spokesman said. He added: “Whilst out on training exercises, the station’s Atlantic 85 lifeboat, Renée Sherman, and volunteer crew came across a jet ski half a mile from the harbour that had two people onboard.

“The jet ski appeared to be suffering with a stability problem, which was confirmed by one of the occupants. The second occupant was taken onboard the lifeboat which then escorted the jet ski safely back to the beach.

Minutes later, the crew received a call from the coastguard following a 999 call from a member of the public, who had reported a person in the water waving for help.

The spokesman said: “The lifeboat was returning to its training exercise and was very close to the scene, two miles east of the harbour. The apparent casualty was a jet skier who was sitting on his wakeboard untangling the lines between the jet ski and the wakeboard and did not require any assistance. The lifeboat and crew returned to their exercises at 2.11pm.”

Following another call from the coastguard, reporting an 11-year-old boy drifting eastwards to sea, the station’s D Class lifeboat, Ray of Hope, launched at 6.20pm on Sunday. The crew headed to the reported location, opposite Rustington Convalescent Home.

The RNLI spokesman said: “The casualty was located on ‘winkle island’, a rocky peninsula attached to the beach which can only be seen towards low water.

“He was standing up but was very frightened. The lifeboat came alongside, and two lifeboat crewmen disembarked and were able to walk the casualty to the beach where he was safely handed over to his family. The casualty, who had received cuts and bruises to his feet, was treated by the paramedics who were in attendance. The lifeboat departed and returned to the station at 7.08pm where it was made ready for service.”

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