Safety advice issued after RNLI called to two incidents

Littlehampton's lifeboats were called to two incidents days apart. File picture courtesy of Littlehampton RNLI
Littlehampton's lifeboats were called to two incidents days apart. File picture courtesy of Littlehampton RNLI

Safety advice has been issued after RNLI crews were called to the aid of a kitesurfer and paddleboarder just days apart.

Following a call from the coastguard, Littlehampton’s Atlantic 85 lifeboat Renée Sherman was launched to the aid of a kitesurfer off Ferring beach shortly before 2.30pm last Wednesday.

A Littlehampton RNLI spokesman said: “The male kite surfer had fallen from his board and was unable to climb back on.

“On arrival at the scene it was confirmed that the casualty had become separated from his kite but was safely ashore. The lifeboat crew were tasked to recover the kite and returned to the station at 4.45pm, where the lifeboat was refuelled and made ready for service.” Two days later, the crew were paged by the coastguard, again shortly before 2.30pm, reporting that there was a person in the sea opposite Littlehampton’s East Beach Café.

The spokesman said D Class lifeboat Ray of Hope’s volunteer crew found a middle-aged man who had fallen from his paddleboard.

He was given first aid aboard the lifeboat before being handed over to paramedics at the lifeboat station.

Harry Gregory, RNLI community safety officer, said: “If you are planning to paddleboard in the sun please take the following steps to protect yourselves. Wear a suitable flotation device – a buoyancy aid is recommended for standup paddleboarding, fit and use a coiled board leash, have at least one accessible means of calling for help – you can currently collect a free waterproof phone pouch from our station during visiting hours, protect yourself from cold water with a winter wetsuit, check the wind and tides and understand their implications. If in doubt, ask!”

For more standup paddleboarding safety advice from the RNLI, visit rnli.org/safety/choose-your-activity/stand-up-paddle-boarding