Incident at St.Mary's Island, August 2006, Picture Courtsey of Adrian Don

2007200820092010

2011

The rescue team are called to a number of incidents over the course of the year. The list below is of all calls responded to by the TVLB in 2014. The buttons above will show the rescue calls for previous years.

The vast majority of callouts are coordinated by 'Humber Coastguard' - 'Humber Coastguard' is the call sign for Humber Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre which is a Coastguard command and control centre based in Bridlington which coordinates the response to reports of maritime and coastal incidents and emergencies along the North-East Coastline of England.

2014

Initial Response Team Calls - 79           Backup Response Team Calls - 6

Monthly Breakdown of Initial Response Team Calls Since 2001

 
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
January
3
12
5
10
4
6
5
7
11
6
9
3
5
5
January
February
3
14
11
10
8
9
3
4
10
6
3
4
3
4
February
March
12
8
8
6
5
3
7
10
11
10
5
5
6
2
March
April
12
5
9
12
7
12
14
10
6
13
15
7
11
9
April
May
12
10
7
9
6
8
13
11
16
9
14
14
10
14
May
June
4
8
10
16
14
19
16
15
13
17
19
8
15
12
June
July
7
9
10
13
22
22
19
21
20
16
24
7
23
10
July
August
5
13
19
9
8
14
22
24
10
17
13
12
13
9
August
September
8
12
9
1
11
7
14
13
14
9
7
8
8
14
September
October
9
4
9
5
10
19
6
12
7
7
15
6
10
0
October
November
10
3
8
12
3
6
8
9
9
12
8
7
6
0
November
December
5
3
5
4
3
4
6
11
8
7
4
10
5
0
December
Total
90
101
110
107
101
129
133
147
135
129
136
91
115
79
Total

079/14 - 27th September 14.52 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Tynemouth RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a report that a person was in the water near the Black Middens Rocks, just East of North Shields Fish Quay. Brigade members arrived on scene and observed as the Lifeboat discovered that in fact no one was in the water but two people onboard a cabin cruiser had broken down. The Lifeboat towed the vessel to South Shields and the Brigade stood down.  

078/14 - 24th September 14.05 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the after two window cleaners noticed a black object in the sea approximately 400 metres off the south end of Tynemouth Long Sands that looked to have some sort of intermittent flashing light attached to it. A Brigade Captain arrived on scene and observed the object with the two first informants who agreed that the object had not moved in 20 minutes they had been watching it. After looking at it through a pair of binoculars, and seeing nothing of note, it was concluded that the object was most likely a marker buoy for either a fishing net or pots. Although of a slightly different design, another buoy was located a short distance from the original object which added further weight to the view held by the Brigade Captain. Humber Coastguard was updated of the situation and the call was put down as a false alarm with good intent, with the first informants thanked for their vigilance.

077/14 - 19th September 12.57 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Blyth Coastguard Rescue Team after receiving a request for assistance from the North East Ambulance Service who had a paramedic attending to a gentleman who a suspected broken foot after falling on rocks at the south end of Collywell Bay. Brigade members arrived on scene and assisted with carrying the man to the Brigade Land Rover which then drove up a slipway and back to the main road. At this point the casualty was transferred to the paramedic’s vehicle which was then used to take the him to hospital.

076/14 - 17th September 17.13 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a request for assistance from Northumbria Police who were responding to reports of a man threatening to commit suicide in the River Tyne, near North Shields Fish Quay. As Brigade members made their way towards the scene, the Coastguard received confirmation from the Police that the casualty was now safely in their custody and all units were stood down.  

075/14 - 16th September 19.30 IRT

As a Brigade Captain drove the Brigade Land Rover back to base following the previous incident he was flagged down by a member of the public at King Edward’s Bay. The member of the public explained that he had just rang the Police as he was concerned for the safety of a group of people at the base of the rocks at Pen Ball Crag. The Brigade Captain informed the Coastguard of the incident and then kept a visual on the group of five fishermen who appeared to be well equipped with various pieces of safety equipment. After 10 minutes had passed and the Captain was convinced that the men were in no immediate danger, it was agreed with the Coastguard that the Brigade could stand down as no action was required.

074/14 - 16th September 19.01 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a report that a person had been washed off rocks near to St. Mary’s Island. Brigade members arrived on scene and, with no one in any obvious immediate danger, carried out a search for the first informant to confirm the location of the casualty. In the meantime the Lifeboat spoke with someone who was on the Island who explained that he was the first informant and confirmed that a group of swimmers who were near the Island included the person who they thought required assistance. However, both the Lifeboat and the Brigade confirmed that these people required no help and both rescue units were given permission by the Coastguard to return to base.

073/14 - 15th September 19.10 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a request for assistance from Northumbria Police and the Tyne & Wear Fire & Rescue Service who were responding to reports that a man was in the River Tyne near to Newburn Bridge. As Brigade members made their way towards the scene they were stood down by the Coastguard as it was confirmed that the man had been recovered from the river and was now in Police custody.  

072/14 - 14th September 19.27 IRT

Shortly after returning from the previous incident, Humber Coastguard again paged the Brigade after receiving a 999 call from a member of the public who was concerned for the safety of two swimmers she had lost sight of in the sea just off the south end of Tynemouth Long Sands. With the light failing and sea conditions deteriorating, Brigade members carried out a quick search of the area and located the swimmers safe and well. The two men, who were experienced sea swimmers, were very grateful for the concern that had been shown towards them and agreed to contact the Coastguard when they go for future swims, to try and reduce the risk of future callouts. The first informant was thanked for her vigilance and the call was put down as a false alarm with good intent.

071/14 - 14th September 16.24 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade with a request to man the Richardson Road Helicopter Landing Site as RAF Rescue Helicopter 131 from RAF Boulmer was in bound with a casualty who had sustained injuries after a fall in the Newbiggin area. Brigade members stood by as the Helicopter landed on the helipad of the RVI so that the casualty could be immediately transferred into the hospitals A&E department. The original plan was for the helicopter to then move to the Richardson Road site where it would wait for the Helicopter winchman to return once he had completed his casualty handover. However, while on the helipad, the crew of the Helicopter identified a small fault with the Helicopter which meant that they instead flew to Newcastle Airport so that a repair could be made. The Brigade Land Rover was then used to transfer the winchman and his equipment from the hospital to the airport, before both the Helicopter and the Brigade returned to their respective stations.

070/14 - 12th September 11.34 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Tynemouth RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a report from Northumbria Police that an 88 year-old man had fallen on rocks just to the North of the North Tyne Pier, directly east of Tynemouth Priory. Brigade members arrived on scene to find the gentleman being cared for by police officers and paramedics from the North East Ambulance Service’s Hazardous Area Response Team. After the paramedics established that the man had suffered only light injuries, it was decided that assisting him in walking off the rocks would be the safest option available to the emergency team. With the assistance of a paramedic and Lifeboatman, the casualty gingerly walked off the rocks and up the steps leading from the rocks towards the pier. Once off the rocks the man was taken to hospital accompanied by paramedics and a police officer.
When Brigade members arrived on scene the steps between the Pier and the rocks were covered in slimy seaweed which was treacherous under foot, and so three brigade members quickly went to work in clearing the seaweed and laying down sand to help the casualty and rescuers safely walk back up to safety – a job that was completed in a timely, (if slightly sweaty), manner in warm autumnal sunshine.

069/14 - 11th September 14.46 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving the 20ft motor cruiser ‘Midnight Pumpkin’ made a ‘pan pan’ broadcast on VHF Channel 16 requesting assistance after they had broken down. The vessel, which was located just to the East of Tynemouth RNLI Station, was towed by the Lifeboat boarding boat to Royal Quays Marina where they were met by members of the Brigade. Brigade members spoke with the husband and wife crew, who were carrying all the necessary safety equipment onboard their boat, and found that the vessel had suffered from a suspected blocked fuel line. As the boat was now safely moored at the Marina, and the couple were already making preparations to fix the fault, the Brigade stood down and returned to station.

068/14 - 10th September 14.13 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a 999 call from a concerned member of the public who could see a man who she thought was in difficulty while swimming approximately 100 metres offshore from the North end of Whitley Bay Beach. As rescue resources made their way towards the scene, the first informant kept the Coastguard updated as the man made his way back ashore and then promptly left the beach. Brigade members and the Lifeboat carried a thorough search of the area but could not find anyone who required any assistance and were then stood down with the call put down as a false alarm with good intent.

067/14 - 5th September 22.51 IRT

Later that night, Humber Coastguard again paged the Brigade after taking a 999 call from a fisherman on the North Tyne Pier who had witnessed a heavily intoxicated man fall from the large gate at the land end of the Pier at 20.15h. The fisherman, who had trespassed onto the Pier, had decided not to contact the Coastguard until 2 and a half hours had passed since he had last seen the gentleman.
As Brigade members started to assemble to search for the man, one of the team remembered that he had seen a man, who matched the description of the missing casualty, being tendered to by local Street Pastors and members of the public on the approach road to the Pier at around 20.50h as he made his way to the previous incident at St. Mary’s Island. Humber Coastguard then made some enquiries with the Police and local hospitals and it was confirmed that the casualty was indeed already receiving medical assistance at North Tyneside General Hospital.
It is important to reiterate the need for information to be passed to the emergency services at the earliest available opportunity in situations like this to avoid delaying the provision of care to casualties and to also ensure that emergency services have up-to-date information and can therefore avoid wasting their time attending to incidents which have already been concluded.

066/14 - 5th September 20.47 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Blyth Coastguard Rescue Team and Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving an immediate request for assistance from the 2-man crew of a yacht that was hard aground on rocks just to the south of St. Mary’s Island. The vessel ran aground around 16.30h earlier that afternoon and Brigade members had already been requested to attend the scene at 22.00h to assist with the vessels refloating. However, as the tide had started to come in, the vessel had began to refloat naturally and the crew were concerned that they were now being battered against rocks and may suffer significant damage to their vessel.
A four man team consisting of two members of the Brigade and two Coastguard Rescue Officers from Blyth donned full Water Rescue equipment and made their way onto the rocks to stand by as the Lifeboat from Cullercoats quickly attached a line to the yacht and successfully towed it out to deeper water. The lifeboat then towed the vessel to Blyth Harbour where they were met by Blyth Coastguard who checked that the crew were OK before standing down.

065/14 - 29th August 20.27 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade with a request to man the Richardson Road Helicopter Landing Site where RAF Rescue Helicopter 131 from RAF Boulmer was due to land at 20.50h. The Helicopter was transporting a man who had sustained injuries after a cliff incident near South Shields. The Helicopter landed on time and the Brigade assisted with transferring the man to an awaiting ambulance which then took him to the RVI for further assessment and treatment. The Brigade Land Rover was used to transport equipment from the Hospital back to the Helicopter, which then returned to its base around 21.30h.  

064/14 - 27th August 20.05 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Tynemouth RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a request for assistance from Northumbria Police who were attempting to persuade a man to come away from the waters edge while he was sat on rocks at Sharpness Point, between King Edward’s Bay and Tynemouth Long Sands. The man, who was known to the Police, was threatening to cause harm to not only himself, but any rescuers who attempted to help him. The Brigade deployed a four man water rescue team, wearing dry suits and lifejackets, who positioned themselves near Police Officers who were negotiating with the gentleman. Meanwhile, the Lifeboat stood by a short distance offshore. After approximately 40 minutes, and as darkness fell, the man agreed to walk off the rocks and he was taken to hospital while in the care of the Police.

063/14 - 16th August 00.35 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a request for assistance from Northumbria Police who were searching for a missing 14 year-old girl in the Cullercoats area. The Police Helicopter had located a heat source on the rocks to the East of Marconi Point, but officers on the ground were finding it difficult to make their way to the location safely and requested the immediate assistance of Brigade members to help them with this. At 00.41h, as Brigade members arrived on scene, the officers confirmed that they had located the girl and she was now safe and well and in their care. At this point the Brigade was stood down and the members returned to their beds.

062/14 - 11th August 19.28 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a report that a dog had fallen from the promenade just to the south of St. Mary’s Island and had sustained serious injuries when landing on the rocks some 15 feet below. Brigade members arrived on scene and used their basket stretcher to carefully carry the dog the 200 metres off the rocks. The Brigade Land Rover was then used to take ‘Libby’, a golden retriever, to a local vet so that she could receive further treatment. Officers from Northumbria Police were also present at this incident.

061/14 - 10th August 19.41 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade following a report of persons in difficulty in an inflatable canoe in the sea in front of the Blue Reef Aquarium. Upon arrival Brigade members contacted the first informant and identified the persons involved, who were four young men enjoying in the surf in the canoe, but in no danger. The first informant was thanked for their vigilance and the callout was put down to a false alarm with good intent.

060/14 - 9th August 21.22 IRT + BRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade and both Tynemouth RNLI Inshore and All Weather Lifeboats, to assist Northumbria Police in locating a vulnerable missing person last seen in the Wallsend area on Saturday morning. The Brigade’s Backup Response Team was mobilised, with a Brigade Captain acting as liaison within the Police. Brigade members searched the north bank of the River Tyne, in the area of the Hadrian’s Wall Pathway and the Willington gut up to Wallsend Burn. The missing person, a lady, was found at 00.00hrs when all units were stood down.

059/14 - 7th August 16.18 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after they receiving a report from a local fishing boat that they had just recovered a 62 year-old man who had fallen overboard from his yacht approximately ½ a mile east of Cullercoats Bay. The man was brought ashore by the Lifeboat where he was met by paramedics from the North East Ambulance Service who treated him for hypothermia.
It was later established that the man had fallen overboard from his yacht approximately an hour before he was rescued – but as he was wearing a harness with a lanyard attached to the yacht, he was able to stay close to the vessel, even if he couldn’t pull himself back onboard. Eventually his cries for help were heard by the crew of the local fishing boat who went to his aid and were able to bring haul him onto their boat. Although he was very cold, the man was found to be in good spirits despite his ordeal.

058/14 - 4th August 20.40 IRT

While out enjoying a stroll along the local coastline, a Brigade member observed two persons on St Mary's Island cut off by the rising tide. The Brigade member assessed the situation and determined that rescue by lifeboat was necessary. He called Humber Coastguard and requested the launch of Cullercoats Lifeboat. Cullercoats Lifeboat arrived a short time later, retrieved the two persons and returned them safely to shore. Once back on the mainland the pair were given information about how to find out the local tide times so that they could avoid being cut off again in the future.

057/14 - 3rd August 22.35 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a request for help from Northumbria Police. They were responding to reports of a young female threatening self harm on rocks in the Tynemouth area. On arrival, Brigade members liaised with the Police and a lighthouse was identified as being in the background of some of the photographs that had been posted on social media. The only lighthouse matching the description was St Mary's in Whitley Bay. The team and the Police then proceeded to that location, upon arrival it was found the female was safe and had been taken into Police custody. All units were stood down.

056/14 - 26th July 17.47 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving reports of a person in difficulty in the River Tyne at Fish Quay Sands, North Shields. On arrival, Brigade members found a man being given CPR by members of the public with assistance given by officers from Northumbria Police. The man was treated by paramedics and taken to North Tyneside General Hospital.

Sadly the man was pronounced dead on arrival at hospital and the Brigade would like to offer our sympathies to the gentleman’s family.  

055/14 - 22nd July 18.23 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade to investigate reports of persons in the water in the River Tyne in the Howdon area. Upon arrival members found that a young man had just left the water after having swum from the south side of the River near the Jarrow Skate Park, he had commenced the swim with another man who had turned back and returned to the south shore. The man was given suitable safety advice prior to returning to Jarrow. South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade was also paged to rendevous with the other swimmer to confirm he was OK and again provide suitable safety advice.

054/14 - 20th July 21.23 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade to man the Richardson Road Helicopter Landing Site for the arrival of RAF Rescue Helicopter 131 which was bringing a female casualty who had fallen from a cliff on the Northumberland Coast. The unconcious female was safely transferred to the RVI Hospital for further treatment. The Brigade Land Rover then returned the winch man and his equipment to the Helicopter. All teams then returned to own bases.

053/14 - 17th July 21.02 IRT

Later that evening Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade to provide support to RAF Rescue Helicopter 131 from RAF Boulmer which was due to land at the Royal Victoria Infirmary, Newcastle. The Helicopter was bringing in a casualty from South Shields who had fallen from a cliff in the Frenchman's Bay area and sustained injuries to his leg. The Helicopter landed on the Helipad on the roof of the Hospital and the casualty was taken to the Hospital A&E department accompanied by the Helicopter Winchman. Brigade members then manned the Richardson Road Helicopter Landing Site which the Helicopter moved to while it waited for the return of the Winchman. A short while later the Brigade Land Rover was used to take the Wincman and his equipment back to the Helicopter before all rescue units returned to their respective stations.

052/14 - 17th July 19.24 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade to assist in the recovery of an intoxicated male on the rocks to the north of Browns Bay, Cullercoats. The Brigade arrived on scene but found the man already in the care of Northumbria Police. With that information the Brigade stood down and returned to station.

051/14 - 17th July 17.40 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving multiple 999 calls reporting that two young girls were being dragged out to sea and were struggling to stay afloat while clinging to individual inflatable’s off Tynemouth Long Sands beach. Brigade members arrived on scene and made contact with the RNLI Beach Lifeguards who were unaware of the incident. The Lifeguards immediately launched their rescue boat to assist the girls with their boat arriving on scene seconds before Cullercoats Lifeboat. The Lifeguards then brought the two girls ashore and found them to be safe and well, if a little shuck up after their scary experience. The girls were issued with strict safety advice about how best to use inflatables and to make sure that they stay close to the shore.

050/14 - 16th July 19.45 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade with a request to proceed to the Walker Riverside area of the River Tyne after receiving a report of three children who were playing in the river and now required urgent assistance after getting into difficulties. Brigade members arrived on scene to find that the call was a false alarm with good intent as the children, who were indeed playing in the River, required no assistance. Paramedics from the North East Ambulance Service, Officers from Northumbria Police and Fire-fighters from the Tyne & Wear Fire & Rescue Service were also in attendance at this incident.

049/14 - 12th July 12.08 IRT + BRT

While carrying out a sea safety demonstration as part of the wide-ranging events taking place at the annual Tynemouth Community Fire Station Open Day, Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a request from Northumbria Police for assistance in searching for a vulnerable 47 year-old female from the Manchester area who had gone missing. The lady’s family had historic links with St. Mary’s Island and so the Brigade was tasked with carrying out a detailed search of this area. The Brigade’s Backup Response Team was called out and a total of 11 Brigade members spent two hours working their away along the rocky foreshore and deep gorse and wetlands between the Island and Hartley Bay. Blyth Coastguard Rescue Team, who were in the area on a coastal patrol, joined the search at 13.15h and searched the coastal paths running north from Hartley Bay to Seaton Sluice. At 14.15h, with no further information available from the Police, and no sightings of the woman within the search area, Humber Coastguard stood down all rescue resources. The Brigade then carried out a coastal patrol until 16.15h with nothing further to report.
RNLI Beach Lifeguards based at Whitley Bay were also involved at the beginning of this incident.

048/14 - 3rd July 03.53 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Cullercoats RNL Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a report from Northumbria Police that a woman was in a distressed state in the sea opposite Whitley Bay Skate Park and required immediate assistance. Brigade members and the Lifeboat arrived on scene 5 minutes later to find that a number of Police Officers had entered the water to recover the lady after deciding that she was in imminent danger of drowning. The casualty was then taken to an awaiting ambulance to receive further attention and all other rescue units were stood down.

047/14 - 2nd July 22.15 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Tynemouth RNL Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a report of a broken down vessel opposite A&P Tyne in the River Tyne, near Wallsend. The vessel had been making its way from the Wansbeck to the Ouseburn when its engine had cut out. Brigade members began to search the river to locate the vessel and were assisted by a number of security officers in the industrial premises along the northern bank of the Tyne. Eventually one security officer located the vessel on his security cameras overlooking the river and a Brigades member monitored the vessel from the comparative luxury of the security office. Tynemouth Inshore Lifeboat had by this time made their way up river and took the vessel under tow to Willington Quay. The vessel was safely moored and the crew brought ashore to be met by the Brigade.

046/14 - 28th June 17.06 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a report from the RNLI Beach Lifeguards based at Cullercoats Bay that they had located a 2 ½ metre dolphin just to the south of the Bay. Unfortunately, the dolphin was dead and was showing the early signs of decomposition. Brigade members arrived on scene to find the mammal to be just below the high-water mark and so the Brigade Land Rover was used to move the body onto the concrete above the high-water mark to ensure it could be easily disposed of by North Tyneside Council, who had been informed of the find and had confirmed they would remove the dolphin early the next day. Furthermore, Brigade members carried out a visual survey of the body and completed a detailed report on the dolphin which was then passed on to Humber Coastguard. This information was then sent to the Natural History Museum who must be informed of all strandings and discoveries of various types of ‘Royal Fish’ which include sturgeons, porpoises, whales and dolphins.

045/14 - 26th June 21.42 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a report that two female bodyboarders had become stuck in a rip current at Tynemouth Long Sands and were in danger of drowning. Brigade members arrived on scene within three minutes of the page to find that the women had been guided to safety by three surfers who were in the sea near them, and everyone was now back on shore and safe and well. The two women, who were with two other women on the shoreline, were found not to require any medical assistance and promptly left the area after being given some advice as to how to spot and avoid rip currents, and what they should do should they get stuck in another one in the future. Blyth Coastguard Rescue Team, who on exercise, were called to assist with this incident but were stood down once it became clear everyone was out of the water.

044/14 - 26th June 11.22 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade and informed them that a small van had become stuck in the sand at Cullercoats Bay while attempting to launch a boat. The vehicle was now becoming submerged by the tide with seawater already inside the vehicle.
Brigade members arrived on scene and attached a line to the vehicle and were close to recovering it when the North Tyneside Council Beach Cleaning Tractor arrived. As the tractor has far greater towing power than the Land Rover, the tow line was quickly switched from the Land Rover to the Tractor which promptly pulled the vehicle from its watery grave and recovered it to above the high water mark. The owner of the vehicle, who was very apologetic for the inconvenience he had caused, was then advised to purchase a longer towing line for future boat launches.

043/14 - 21st June 18.20 IRT

Later that evening, Humber Coastguard phoned a Brigade Captain and informed him that a Land Rover Freelander had become stuck in the sand at Cullercoats Bay while attempting to recover a personal water ski, and was in danger of being consumed by the incoming tide. Brigade members arrived on scene and, using the Brigade Land Rover, quickly recovered the Freelander and the ski from the sea. Although the owner of the vehicle, (who was highly apologetic for the inconvenience he had caused and very grateful for the help he received), had all the necessary safety equipment for his ski, he was advised to purchase a more robust and longer tow rope for future trips to the beach.

042/14 - 21st June 15.57 IRT

While Brigade members were on a local area patrol, Humber Coastguard requested that they proceed to the Richardson Road Helicopter Landing Site where RAF Rescue Helicopter 131 from RAF Boulmer was inbound with a diver who had fallen ill while diving somewhere near the Farne Islands. The Helicopter arrived at 16.20h and landed on the Hospital Helipad where the casualty was taken into the A & E Department accompanied by the Helicopter Winchman. A short while later the Helicopter moved to the Richardson Road site, which was manned by four Brigade members, where it waited for the Winchman to complete the casualty handover in the hospital. A short while the Brigade Land Rover was used to transfer the Winchman, a stretcher and various pieces of medical equipment back to the Helicopter, which then promptly departed the landing site and the Brigade returned to station.

041/14 - 18th June 21.08 IRT

While Brigade members were on a training exercise with their colleagues from South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade, Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a request for assistance from Northumbria Police who were responding to reports of a man threatening to harm himself on rocks between Cullercoats Bay and Tynemouth Long Sands. Brigade members, along with members of South Shields VLB, arrived on scene and spoke with Police Officers who explained that the casualty was on a rocky outcrop - (which is known locally as ‘camels hump’ for its distinctive shape) - but explained that they were unable to approach the man due to the high tide and the unsafe condition of the outcrop which has been left unstable by coastal erosion. After initially asking all services to give the casualty some distance as he was in an agitated state, the Police asked the Lifeboat to launch and attempt to make contact with the casualty. A short while later a crew member from Cullercoats RNLI swam from the Lifeboat and found the man to have taken a fall and suffered possible leg injuries. The man remained in a very agitated state and was also believed to be heavily intoxicated. After evaluating the different rescue options available, the Brigade and the Lifeboat agreed that the best way to recover the casualty was to place him in a basket stretcher and then lift him into the lifeboat which would position itself as close to the rocks as it could. To assist with transferring the casualty to the Lifeboat, two Brigade members donned dry suits and Water Rescue equipment and made their way to the casualty’s location – they were assisted by three members of the Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Services Swift Water Rescue Team who were also in attendance at the incident.
Working as a team, the Brigade members, Fire-fighters and Lifeboatmen lifted the stretcher onto the lifeboat, which had been brought as close to the rocks as possible by the skilful seamanship of the Senior Helmsman at Cullercoats Lifeboat who had dropped his anchor and was veering down towards the rocks. Once the casualty was onboard the Lifeboat he was brought back to Cullercoats RNLI station and transferred into the care of Paramedics and Police Officers.

The incident involved excellent teamwork between the Lifeboat, the two Brigades and the Fire Service and was carried out in a timely, professional and safe manner.

040/14 - 17th June 19.44 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a report that four people may be in trouble in the water near St. Mary’s Island. As Brigade members arrived on scene, Blyth Coastguard Rescue Team, who had been on a training exercise nearby, confirmed that the four people were in fact divers who required no further assistance. The Brigade was stood down and the call was put down as a false alarm with good intent. Blyth RNLI Inshore Lifeboat was also in attendance at this incident.

039/14 - 17th June 18.17 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a 999 call from a concerned member of the public who could see a small boat off the north end of Whitley Bay Beach which appeared to be broken down, with the two men onboard attempting to fix the engine. Brigade members arrived on scene and located the boat, which had now started its engine and was in the process of returning to shore. The Lifeboat arrived a short while later and the man confirmed that they required no further assistance. Once back on shore, Brigade members spoke with the two men who explained that their engine had stopped working but they had eventually managed to fix it. The men were very fortunate that they had been spotted as, had they been unable to fix their problem, they would have been unable to call for help as their distress flares and VHF radio were locked away in a storage cabinet onshore. The men justified this by saying that they were only going a short distance offshore and had returned safe and well, but the Brigade would like to remind all boat users to ensure they carry all the necessary safety equipment, including lifejackets, flares and a VHF radio, whenever heading out to sea so that they are prepared in case something untoward should happen.

038/14 - 17th June 11.55 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a request for assistance from the North East Ambulance Service who were responding to reports that a man had fallen on rocks just to the north of Browns Bay, suffering head and spinal injuries and a broken left ankle. Brigade members arrived on scene and worked with paramedics from the Ambulance Service’s Hazardous Area Response Team to stabilise the casualty. The man was then carried from the rocks by a 15-strong group of rescuers which included Brigade members, paramedics, officers from Northumbria Police, RNLI Beach Lifeguards and a member of Cullercoats RNLI who had happened to be passing the scene at the time of the incident. The man was then taken to North Tyneside General hospital for further assessment and treatment.

037/14 - 15th June 10.45 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade with a request to man the Richardson Road Helicopter Landing Site where RAF Rescue Helicopter 131 from RAF Boulmer was due to land at 11.25h with a male casualty who was suffering from chest pains and had been evacuated from a North Sea Oil Rig. The Helicopter landed on time and the casualty was transferred to an awaiting ambulance which took him to a local hospital for further assessment and treatment. The Helicopter then left the scene and the Brigade returned to base. Fire-fighters from the Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service were also in attendance at this incident.

036/14 - 11th June 20.49 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Tynemouth RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a report from Northumbria Police that a 43 year-old man was threatening to harm himself and was currently somewhere on the North Tyne Pier. Brigade members arrived on scene and supported Police Officers as they located, and started speaking, with the man, who was sat on a set of steps on the inside of the Pier, roughly 50 metres from the seaward end of the Pier. A team of Brigade members proceeded along the Pier with Water Rescue equipment and kept a safe distance back, with the Lifeboat also in attendance and keeping a careful watch on the casualty. After approximately 20 minutes the casualty agreed to come away from the steps and returned to the main part of the Pier before being escorted to safety by Police Officers and Brigade members, with the Lifeboat following from the River. The casualty then left the scene in the care of the Police and all units were stood down.

035/14 - 1st June 06.08 IRT & BRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade and Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a report that a man was trapped on a rock at Browns Bay.

Brigade members arrived on scene and located the casualty, who was sat on a large rock approximately 10 metres from the lower promenade, with the rock surrounded by the high tide. The lifeboat arrived on scene but the shallow water depths meant that it was unable to manoeuvre alongside the rock and so two crew members swam from the boat to the rock where they found the casualty to be suffering from hypothermia. After considering the various different options of recovering the casualty safely, the crew requested the Brigade to deploy a Rope Rescue technician to bring the casualty up to the promenade.

This involved the technician being lowered down the 15-foot sea-wall, swimming out to therock, and then bringing the casualty, with assistance from the lifeboat crew, to the foot of the sea-wall before the casualty and technician were then hauled back up the wall, over the safety railings and to safety. This complex and testing rescue, which involved Brigade members utilising both their Rope and Water Rescue skills, was further complicated by the casualties hypothermic condition which limited his ability to comply with the instructions given by the rescuers. Due to the nature of this incident, the Brigade's Backup Response Team was called out and a total of nine team members were present.

Once the casualty had been brought to safety he was handed into the care of paramedics who took him to North Tyneside General Hospital for further assessment and treatment. Officers from Northumbria Police were also present at this incident. Furthermore,  due to the challenges presented by the location of this incident, Rescue  Helicopter 131 from RAF Boulmer was asked to attend in order to  provide backup support. However, in the end the casualty was safely  brought over the sea-wall by the teams present and the helicopter was  stood down.

034/14 - 31st May 07.46 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a 999 call from the RNLI North Tyneside Lifeguard Supervisor, who was off duty, who had observed a man swimming unusually slowly approximately 100 yards from the shore near the High Point Hotel, Whitley Bay.

Two Brigade members arrived on scene and located the swimmer. They observed him moving slowly but in no apparent distress. One Brigade member tried to make contact with the swimmer but the swimmer did not acknowledge the shouts. The Brigade then asked the Coastguard for Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat to be launched to go and check-up on the man - moments after this request was made the man appeared to stop swimming and floated face-down in the water.

The casualty, who was too far from the shore for an effective Water Rescue to be attempted, was kept under watch by the Brigade during the short time that it took Cullercoats Lifeboat to launch and retrieve him from the water. The lifeboat crew performed CPR on the casualty and he was transferred into the care of an ambulance from the North East Ambulance Service who were waiting at the Lifeboat station. From here the man, who was in a critical condition, was taken to North Tyneside General Hospital.

Despite the best efforts of all involved, the casualty died at hospital later on Saturday afternoon. The Brigade expresses its deepest sympathies to the friends and family of the casualty.

033/14 - 28th May 08.56 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade with a request to man the Richardson Road Helicopter Landing Site where RAF Rescue Helicopter 131 was due to land at 9.50am with a casualty from an oilrig offshore from Aberdeen. Although the Helicopter would normally land on the landing site on top of the RVI during daylight hours, the poor weather conditions meant that the Helicopter crew requested the Brigade to be on stand by on the ground-level landing site.
The Helicopter arrived on time and successfully landed on the roof, with the casualty, who had suffered a head injury, quickly transferred to the Hospital’s A & E – the Helicopter then moved to the ground-floor landing site which had been cleared and prepared by the Brigade. The Brigade Land Rover was then used to transport equipment and the Helicopter winch man from the Hospital A & E back to the landing site before the Helicopter took off and returned to its base at around 10.30am.

032/14 - 18th May 18.17 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a 999 call from a concerned member of the public who could see two kayakers approximately ½ a mile offshore from the North end of Whitley Bay who appeared to be making little to no progress in blustery conditions. Brigade members arrived on scene and observed the kayaks for a number of minutes and, while they were too far offshore to be certain what they were doing, it was soon agreed with Humber Coastguard that it would be prudent for Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat to be launched to check whether the kayakers required any further assistance. The Lifeboat arrived on scene at 18.40h and found that the kayakers were fishing from their boats which explained why they had appeared to have been making slow progress. The men had all the necessary safety equipment with them and as they required no help, the Lifeboat and the Brigade were stood down and the call was marked down as a false alarm with good intent.

031/14 - 18th May 15.10 IRT

Later in the patrol, Brigade members were flagged down by a member of the public who requested help for his 14 year-old friend who had sustained a cut to one of her big toes. Brigade members cleaned and dressed the wound and advised her to seek further medical assistance as the cut was deep and may require further cleaning to ensure against any further complications.

030/14 - 18th May 14.08 IRT

A short while later Brigade members were informed that a car was stuck in the sand at Cullercoats Bay with the incoming tide threatening to consume the vehicle. Brigade members proceeded to the Bay and arrived as the vehicle was freed from the sand.

029/14 - 18th May 13.50 IRT

While on a coastal patrol, Brigade members were tasked by Humber Coastguard to investigate a report of a capsized sailing dinghy near the Mouth of the River Tyne. As it was believed that the occupant of the vessel was in difficulty, Tynemouth RNLI Inshore Lifeboat was also tasked to this incident. Brigade members arrived on scene and quickly located the dinghy which was in the process of being righted with the assistance of a safety boat from the local sailing club. The Lifeboat arrived on scene a short while later and, after carrying out a search of the area, and speaking with other sailors in the area, confirmed that no further assistance was required and both units were stood down.  

028/14 - 17th May 16.50 IRT

While treating the casualty of the below incident, Brigade members and Lifeguards were made aware of two members of the public who had become stuck on rocks at Sharpness Point, which is between Tynemouth Long Sands and King Edwards Bay. An RNLI Lifeguard paddled round to the two on a rescue board and brought them to a small beach at the very southern end of Tynemouth Long Sands, where they were met by Brigade members who took them to safety. The pair were issued with safety advice as they could have avoided becoming stuck on the rocks with a little common sense and awareness of the incoming tide.  

027/14 - 17th May 16.40 IRT

As Brigade members repacked equipment used in the previous incident, they overhead RNLI volunteer lifeguards at Tynemouth Long Sands request Humber Coastguard to send an ambulance to the south end of their beach as they had a casualty who required oxygen and additional treatment. Brigade members arrived on scene and assisted with the care of a 17 year-old female who was believed to be suffering from a panic attack. A paramedic from the North East Ambulance Service arrived a short while later and took over the care of the casualty, at which point Brigade members and Lifeguards then moved on to the above incident.

026/14 - 17th May 16.05 IRT

Immediately after the conclusion of the search at Whitley Bay, Humber Coastguard tasked the Brigade and Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat to go to the assistance of a member of the public who was approximately 300 metres offshore from Cullercoats Bay and was believed to have fallen off his personal water craft. Brigade members arrived on scene four minutes later to find that the man had been brought ashore and required medical care due to suffering the effects of hypothermia. The casualty was cared for by Brigade members and officers from Northumbria Police before paramedics from the North East Ambulance Service arrived. The casualty was then carried on a stretcher by all three emergency services and taken to an ambulance which then took him to North Tyneside General Hospital for further assessment and treatment.
It was later established that the man had been onboard the craft with a friend – while offshore one of the men got into the sea to allow the other man a chance to control the craft on his own. While out of his own, this man fell off the craft. His friend then swam out to him and the craft, which had stopped next to him, and was then able to bring him ashore, with the assistance of another member of the public onboard a different personal water craft who had realised what had happened and had gone to assist. Of the two original men, only the man who went to the assistance of his friend had any form of safety equipment on them, which was a buoyancy aid. Had the other man had a buoyancy aid or lifejacket, or had either man had a radio or distress flares on their person or on the craft, then the time spent in the water would have been much less and the assistance of the emergency services may have been avoided. Cullercoats Lifeboat was tasked to assist in this incident but, as the emergency services were only alerted at a late stage, the craft with two men onboard had returned to Cullercoats Bay by the time the Lifeboat launched.  

025/14 - 17th May 15.50 IRT + BRT

While on a coastal patrol, Brigade members were informed by Humber Coastguard that a brother and sister, aged 5 and 6, had been reported missing on Whitley Bay Beach. The Brigade members on patrol requested that the Brigade’s Backup Response Team be called out to assist and an initial search of the area commenced with assistance from Blyth Coastguard Rescue Team who were also on patrol. At 16.05h Northumbria Police confirmed that they had located the missing children safe and well.

024/14 - 16th May 04.59 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a 999 call from a member of the public who stated that he could see a man 200/250 metres offshore from Browns Bay, just to the North of Cullercoats Bay, who appeared to be requiring urgent assistance. Both the Brigade and Lifeboat responded extremely quickly with teams on scene within a matter of minutes and the man recovered from the sea by the lifeboat at 05.03h. The man, a 25 year-old from the Hartlepool area, was found to be conscious but was suffering from hypothermia after spending some time in the water. He was taken back to the Lifeboat Station by the Lifeboat where an ambulance from the North East Ambulance Service was waiting for him and took him to North Tyneside General Hospital for further assessment and treatment. Officers from Northumbria Police were also present at the incident. The casualty explained to the lifeboat crews that he had ended in the sea after slipping off a rock.

023/14 - 12th May 05.01 IRT & BRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade with a request to assist in a major rescue operation which was underway after Northumbria Police received a report on Sunday evening that three men, from the South Shields area, had failed to return home after going kayaking in Northumberland. Vehicles belonging to the missing men were located in the early hours of the morning near Hexham Rowing Club and Wylam train station car park. The Brigade was called out after the casualty was located shortly before 5am – this casualty was recovered by RAF Rescue Helicopter 131 from RAF Boulmer who had been called to assist with the incident. During the course of the incident the second casualty was located at 6.20am with the final casualty found around 1.20pm.
Originally, the Brigade was tasked in a support role and to provide a communication link with the Helicopter. However, once on scene it became clear that the Brigade could assist in a number of other ways and the Backup Response Team was called out. Team members then carried out numerous tasks, which included: providing search teams to work their way along the river banks looking for the missing kayakers; transporting personnel and equipment in the Brigade Land Rover which is specially designed to cope with the rugged and uneven terrain that rescuers faced at various points of the search; and to set up and man helicopter landing sites for the Sea King Helicopter from RAF Boulmer.
During the course of the search, Brigade members donned their water rescue dry suits and lifejackets and entered the water on a number of occasions to investigate reported sightings of the missing kayakers, and to assist in the recovery of the final casualty.
The incident involved a large amount of multi-agency co-operation and teamwork with officers from Northumberland and Tyne and Wear Fire & Rescue Services present, along with their specialist water rescue teams. Officers from Northumbria Police were present along with their helicopter, callsign ‘NPAS 32’. Furthermore, the RAF Sea King Rescue Helicopter from RAF Boulmer was heavily involved throughout the operation, as where units from the North East Ambulance Service and a number of different mountain rescue teams.

Unfortunately, all three casualties were deceased by the time they were recovered by the emergency services and the Brigade would like to express its deepest sympathies to the families of the three men.

022/14 - 4th May 18.16 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Blyth Coastguard Rescue Team after receiving a request for assistance from Northumbria Police in the search for a man who had taken an overdose of alcohol and drugs and threatened to harm himself. Shortly after both teams arrived at Seaton Sluice, where the man was believed to be, he was located by Police Officers and taken into care for his own safety. At this point all other rescue units were stood down. 

021/14 - 3rd May 14.48 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade and Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a report that a personal water craft with one person on board had got into difficulty on the rocks just to the North of the North Pier at Cullercoats Bay. Brigade members kept a visual on the craft as the Lifeboat quickly launched and brought it the short distance back into the safety of the Bay. Here the owner was met by Brigade members who checked that he was fit and well, which he was, and then all rescue units were stood down.  

020/14 - 30th April 17.21 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a 999 call from a lady who could see a small white boat off Tynemouth Long Sands which she thought may have broken down. Brigade members arrived on scene and observed the vessel appear to drift with the person on board stood close to the engine, which suggested that there may be an issue with it. Humber Coastguard, who were aware that crew members at Cullercoats RNLI were on station preparing for their weekly training evening, decided to request the launch of the Lifeboat to check that all was well on board. As the lifeboat entered the water, the craft started its engines and headed towards the Tyne Piers which suggested that no further assistance was required. This was confirmed a short while later when the Lifeboat caught up with the boat and spoke with the man on board who confirmed that he was perfectly happy enjoying a pleasant evening out at sea. The first informant was thanked for their vigilance and the call was put down as a false alarm with good intent.

019/14 - 24th April 10.46 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade and Blyth Coastguard Rescue Team after receiving a report that a 3 foot long Alaskan Malamute, called ‘Kia’, had become stuck on the ledge of a seawall at Collywell Bay, just to the South of Seaton Sluice. The dog was unable to climb up a 4 foot wall and, due to breaking waves and the position of the dog, rescuers were unable to initially lift it to safety. Wearing Water Rescue equipment, the station officer of Blyth Coastguard and a Brigade Captain tried to lift and coax the dog up the wall by: tempting it with dog treats; lowering a box for the dog to climb onto and lowering a stretcher that the dog could run up – all without success. With the incoming tide rapidly increasing the size of waves that were breaking over the dog and the rescuers, a Brigade Captain and a member of Blyth Coastguard donned dry suits and lifejackets and climbed down next to the dog before lifting it up the 4ft ledge where it was then led to safety. The rescue posed a number of difficulties due to the location and size of the dog which were overcome by strong teamwork in a challenging, and at times wet, environment.

018/14 - 20th April 16.54 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after crew members of Cullercoats RNLI noticed a small rigid-inflatable boat drifting just outside the South Pier of Cullercoats Bay. A Brigade member was on scene within 90 seconds of the call and kept observations on the boat as it was rowed into the safety of the Bay by the two crew onboard. Once on the shore it was established that the vessel had suffered engine failure – Brigade members then issued some safety advice to the owners of the boat as they had only limited safety equipment on the vessel.

017/14 - 20th April 00.09 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade with a request to man the Richardson Road Helicopter Landing Site where RAF Rescue Helicopter Sea King 131 from RAF Boulmer was due to land at 00.45h with a gentleman who had severed a finger during an incident on board a North Sea Oil Rig. Brigade members secured the landing site and assisted with transferring the man from the Helicopter to an awaiting ambulance which took him to the RVI.

This incident was made slightly more ‘complicated’ for the three Brigade members due to the presence of 30 cows at the Landing Site. While cows on or near the landing site is an annual occurrence during the spring and summer months, their reaction to the noise of the approaching Helicopter was different from normal as they ran directly toward the Landing Site. This led to a Brigade member having to take 'Immediate Action' to avoid the approaching hoard, which helped to ensure he was wide awake for the rest of the incident.

016/14 - 19th April 19.08 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a call from a gentleman at the Old Hartley Bay Caravan Park who had observed what he thought may be two members of the public sat on St. Mary’s Island near to the causeway. As it was currently high tide and it would be close to 10pm before the causeway was safe to use, and due to the cold weather conditions, the Brigade was dispatched to the scene to investigate whether a lifeboat was required to retrieve the pair. After carrying out a detailed investigation from the land end of the causeway and from the first informant’s caravan at Old Hartley, Brigade members concluded that the ‘people’ were in fact shadows caused by railings on the Island and the rapidly-setting sun. The first informant was thanked for his vigilance and the call was put down as a false alarm with good intent.

015/14 - 15th April 12.51 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade to reports of a person in the water under the Redheugh Bridge in Newcastle. A Brigade member arrived on scene within one minute of the initial page and rendezvoused with police officers on scene. The person believed to be female had jumped into the river and bystanders raised the alarm. The Brigade carried out a search from the Redheugh Bridge and immediate area up to the Scotswood Bridge on the northern bank of the river. The RNLI inshore lifeboat from Tynemouth, the police marine unit and the fire & rescue service’s rescue boat carried out a detailed search of the river and river banks up to the Scotswood Bridge. The police air support unit NPAS32 (formerly known as India 99) also carried out an aerial search of the river. The North East Ambulance Service’s Hazardous Area Response Team (HART) and the Tyne & Wear Fire & Rescue Service were also in attendance and assisted in the search on the both sides of the river bank. After a thorough search of the area with nothing found apart from some personal belongings the team was stood down at 15.00h. A number of Northumbria police officers remained on scene.

014/14 - 9th April 13.23 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a 999 call from a man who’s dog, a golden retriever called Penny, had fallen down a cliff between St. Mary’s Island and Hartley Bay. The man, who was taking a photo when the dog ran off, was unable to get to his dog. A Brigade member arrived on scene and located the dog 250 meters north of the causeway. As the tide was falling the Brigade member made his way from the causeway, over the beach and rocks, to the dog.

Penny had fallen approximately 30 feet but was uninjured just rather muddy. At first the dog was “apprehensive” about the Brigade member getting close. After 20 minutes the Brigade member managed to attach a makeshift lead to the dog’s collar and walk her over the rocks to the causeway where she was reunited with her grateful owner. The Brigade member then stood down at 14.45h.

013/14 - 7th April 08.25 IRT

While making his way to his place of work, a Brigade Captain noticed that a vehicle had become stuck on the causeway towards St. Mary’s Island. On further investigation it was found that the Land Rover Discovery had its front nearside wheel off the causeway and was stuck fast. The driver of the vehicle was safe ashore on the island and had attempted an initial recovery with assistance from workmen on the Island, which had failed. Humber Coastguard were informed of the incident and it was decided that, with the incoming tide fast approaching, nothing further could be done until the high tide had passed. The vehicle was eventually recovered back to the mainland at around 1pm.  

012/14 - 6th April 16.38 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Tynemouth RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a report from Northumbria Police that a woman was threatening to harm herself at North Shields Ferry Landing. Once on scene, rescue units were unable to locate the woman and, after the Coastguard held further discussions with the Police, it was confirmed that the woman and had been taken into care by the Police and all units were stood down.

011/14 - 15th March 11.49 IRT + BRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade with a request to assist Northumbria Police with a search for a 20 year-old male who had gone missing from the Walker area of Newcastle at approximately 1.30am that morning. The Brigade’s Backup Response Team was mobilised and a detailed search was carried out of the North bank of the River Tyne between St. Anthony’s Point, Walker, and North Shields Fish Quay. Just before 4pm, Northumbria Police received new information which indicated that the gentleman had been seen to the North of Wallsend at approximately 3am. Based on this information and the detailed search that had already been completed, the Police informed the Brigade that they could stand down. Other units which were involved in the search included Tynemouth RNLI Inshore Lifeboat, the Tyne & Wear Fire & Rescue Service Boat and various units from Northumbria Police including ground search teams and Helicopter ‘India 99’.

010/14 - 9th March 13.06 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade with a request to man the Richardson Road Helicopter Landing Site where RAF Rescue Helicopter 131 from RAF Boulmer was due to land at 13.50h with a casualty who was then to be transferred to the RVI Hospital. As three Brigade members made their way towards the Landing Site, the Coastguard confirmed that the Helicopter had decided to land on the Helipad on top of the Hospital and no longer required the manning of the Richardson Road Site. At this point the Brigade was stood down and returned to station.

009/14 - 19th February 16.24 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a report from an off-duty Police Officer that he could see a family of four cut off by the tide at St. Mary’s Island, with the next safe crossing time around 8pm. A Brigade Captain arrived on scene and kept a visual on the group as the Lifeboat put two crew members onto the Island who quickly located the four, which included two young boys aged 13 and 8, and then helped them climb aboard the boat. Due to the local weather conditions, it was not possible for the Lifeboat to land the group on the land side of the Island causeway and so they were taken back to Cullercoats Lifeboat Station, and then given a lift in the Brigade Land Rover back to their car at St. Mary’s Island. The four were deeply apologetic for the inconvenience they had caused and thanked all those who had been involved in their rescue.

008/14 - 4th February 17.24 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a 999 call from a lady on Tynemouth Long Sands who was concerned for the safety of a male swimmer she had last seen in the sea at around 17.10h. The man, who was wearing a wet suit and had a red flashing identification beacon on his head, had headed about 50 metres offshore before starting to swim and could not now be seen. Brigade members arrived on scene and, in failing light, initially struggled to locate the swimmer. As the Coastguard prepared to launch the local Lifeboats to assist with the search, the swimmer was spotted in the sea and a short while later he swam back to shore. Here he was met by a Brigade member who was informed that the swimmer had a partner who was still in the sea but had not been seen for 20 minutes. A short additional search was carried out, in near darkness, before the 2nd swimmer was located still in the sea – he also returned to the shore a short while later.
While the swimmers were extremely experienced sea swimmers preparing for long endurance swims they have planned later in the year, Brigade members spent some time explaining the risks of swimming in the dark to them and highlighted the fact that members of the public will be unaware of their experience and skills and will have genuine concerns for their wellbeing. The pair apologised for the inconvenience they had caused before leaving the beach.  

007/14 - 3rd February 21.46 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade with a request to man the Richardson Road Helicopter Landing Site where Sea King Rescue Helicopter 131 from RAF Bolumer was due to land at 11pm. The Helicopter was inbound with a man who had sustained a lower back injury while onboard an oil rig positioned approximately 150 miles east of Aberdeen. The Helicopter landed at 22.55h and the casualty, who was on a stretcher, was carried by Brigade members to an awaiting ambulance which took him to the RVI for further assessment and treatment.

006/14 - 2nd February 15.00 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a report that seven members of the public were cut off by the tide on St. Mary’s Island.
Brigade members arrived on scene within minutes of the page and kept a visual on the group until the Lifeboat arrived. Once on scene the seven were quickly put aboard the lifeboat which then brought them back to the mainland and landed them on a small beach just to the north of the causeway. Once back on the mainland, the group were met by Brigade members who issued them with information on how to find out the local safe crossing times for the causeway.

005/14 - 18th January 12.05 IRT

Just after midday, the Brigade was again called out after Humber Coastguard receiving a 999 call from a worker at a care home in Whitley Bay who could see an object, which he thought was a personal water craft with no one onboard, approximately a mile offshore. Brigade members arrived on scene and used binoculars to confirm that the object was in fact a fishing coble, whose crew were in the process of recovering fishing nets, and combined with the vessel rolling about in the moderately rough conditions, could be interrupted as a vessel in difficulty. The call was put down as a false alarm with good intent and the first informant was thanked for their vigilance.  

004/14 - 18th January 10.12 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade after receiving a 999 call from a man reporting that his boat had broken down just outside the Tyne Piers. Brigade members kept a visual on the vessel as Tynemouth RNLI All-Weather Lifeboat launched to bring it to safety. Once the Lifeboat was on scene they confirmed that they would be returning the vessel to South Shields and so, once the vessels were safely back inside the river mouth, Humber Coastguard stood the Brigade down. South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade was then called out to meet the crew of the vessel at South Shields to pass on some suitable safety advice.  

003/14 - 11th January 11.25 IRT

While two Brigade Captains were with the Brigade Land Rover at Sunderland Volunteer Life Brigade Headquarters to attend the unveiling of that organisations new vehicle, Humber Coastguard radioed them with a request to proceed to King Edward’s Bay after a 999 call had been received reporting two people cut off by the tide at the south end of King Edwards Bay. As the Brigade Land Rover was going to take 25 minutes to reach the scene, the Initial Response Team was also paged and a team member arrived on scene and quickly located the two casualties. Despite the instructions of the first informant, and the Brigade member, the casualties managed to climb over rocks, and narrowly avoided being hit by large waves, and made their way back onto the beach and walked to safety. Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat was also called to this incident and carried out a search of the area to ensure no one else was in difficulty before they were then allowed to return to station.

002/14 - 5th January 16.03 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along Cullercoats RNLI Inshore Lifeboat after receiving a report from a member of the public that they could see three people, believed to be a mother and her young son and daughter, cut off by the tide on St. Mary’s Island. With the causeway likely to be covered for another four hours, and with the onset of darkness and in cold and blustery conditions, the Coastguard decided to task rescue resources to the incident in order to prevent the family coming to any further harm.
Brigade members arrived on scene within minutes of the page and kept a visual on the family until the Lifeboat arrived. Once on scene the family were quickly put aboard the lifeboat which then brought them back to the mainland and landed them on a small beach just to the north of the causeway. Here they were met by Brigade members and officers from Northumbria Police who jointly issued them with information on how to find out the local safe crossing times. The family, who were cold but otherwise unhurt, apologised for the inconvenience they had caused and thanked the rescue resources for coming and getting them.
RAF Rescue Helicopter 131 from RAF Bolumer, which was in the area on a training exercise, also attended this incident and kept watch as the family were recovered onto the lifeboat and then brought ashore.

001/14 - 2nd January 00.25 IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the Brigade along with Blyth Coastguard Rescue Team after receiving a report that a vehicle had gone through the railings at the very north end of Whitley Bay Beach and was now lying on its roof with a person trapped inside. Brigade members arrived on scene at the same time as the other emergency services and found the car to be positioned below the high water mark with the tide rapidly approaching it and a female casualty inside suffering from suspected spinal and pelvis injuries. All the emergency services worked together to quickly extricate the casualty from the vehicle and onto a Brigade stretcher before she was carried off the beach and to an awaiting ambulance which took her to the RVI Hospital in Newcastle for further assessment and treatment. Brigade members then worked with their colleagues from Blyth and local fire-fighters to secure a line to the vehicle, which was now being buffeted by the waves of the incoming tide, before the scene was left in the command of Northumbria Police who were carrying out investigations into the cause of the incident and working out how best to recover the vehicle from the beach.
Along with the Brigade and Blyth Coastguard, the other emergency services on scene were officers from Northumbria Police, paramedics from the North East Ambulance Service including members of their Hazardous Area Response Team, and fire-fighters from the Tyne and Wear Fire & Rescue Service.

 

2007200820092010

2011

The Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade. Registered Charity Number 1093237

T.V.L.B. 2014