Reliability, Performance, Compliance


Flares aid night-time rescue in Essex ​

Harwich RNLI

Flares helped light the way for RNLI crew during an evening rescue on England’s East coast in a busy shipping area.

The crew of a 42-foot motorboat issued a distress call after suffering a power failure, near Harwich, Essex. The vessel lost is lights and equipment and the occupants were unsure of its position.

Harwich RNLI tried to use direction-finding equipment to narrow down its position and it was finally pinpointed by the lifeboat crew after firing a flare.

The vessel, which had a single engine still working, followed the lifeboat by to Harwich Harbour.

Harwich RNLI Volunteer Press Officer, Daniel Sime says, “The occupants did exactly the right thing in requesting assistance given the circumstances they found themselves in.

“Issues with an engine, leading to a loss of power to navigation lights and equipment, and in an area very close to the main channel used by large commercial vessels running in and out of Harwich, Ipswich and the Port of Felixstowe, all adds up to a significant level of risk.

“Despite the communication limitations at times, having a means of calling for help in the first place was absolutely vital, and having the added backup of flares helped further with the lifeboat crew locating the vessel.”

The photo shows an outline of the casualty vessel being led to safety by the all-weather lifeboat. It is courtesy of Harwich RNLI’s Facebook page.

Jul 25, 2019