False alarm with good intent.

Launch No: 379
Craft: Spirit of the Dart. D-702
Wednesday, 17 April 2019
Location: Matt's Point, west of Blackpool Sands. Start Bay.
Dart RNLI D class lifeboat responding to report of a family trapped near Blackpool Sands
Photo: Andy Kyle
Dart RNLI D class lifeboat responding to report of a family trapped near Blackpool Sands

An adult and two children were seen on rocks at the water's edge at Matt's Point, to the west of Blackpool Sands. When a military helicopter flew by the children jumped to their feet and were seen to be waving furiously. Shortly afterwards they were seen to be starting to attempt to climb higher up the rocks and the alarm was raised by another family on Blackpool Sands, assuming that the children had been waving to the helicopter to attract attention. The Coastguard in Falmouth tasked the Dart RNLI D class lifeboat, the local Coastguard Search and Rescue team and the Coastguard helicopter. The D class lifeboat had been tasked, rather than the faster B class, as the D class inflatable can go right up against the rocks to take casualties on board which the larger lifeboat cannot.
The family on the rocks managed to safely return to Blackpool Sands and the Coastguard, who had remained in contact with the caller who raised the alarm, was informed and stood the emergency services down.

Time

Request Received 11:30am
Time at incident 3 minutes
Time to recovery 45 minutes
Back on Service 12:30pm

Conditions

Sea/River State Calm
Wind Direction East
Wind Strength 7 knots

Lifeboat Crew

Kevin Murphy (Helm)
Lee Darch
Yorkie Lomas

Shore Crew

Stuart Millard (Tractor Driver)
Pete Callis
Katy Sarah
Paul Manley

Station address

RNLI Dart Lifeboat Station
Coronation Park
North Embankment
Dartmouth
Devon TQ6 9RR

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Visitor Centre address

RNLI Visitor Centre
9 South Embankment (Ground Floor)
Dartmouth
Devon TQ6 9BH

Visitor Centre phone number

01803 832423

Visitor Centre opening hours

Closed until 16 Feb 2019
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