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




Initial Response Team Calls - 90        Backup Response Team Calls  - 12

090/01 - 29th December 22.07h IRT

Paged by Coastguard to prepare the helicopter-landing site (HLS) at the Freeman hospital in Newcastle, to meet RAF Sea King 'Rescue 128' from Leckenfield, which had picked up a seriously ill baby and medical team from Liverpool for specialist treatment here. As the crew of Rescue 128 had been working for 14 hours, Rescue 131, the Sea King from Boulmer was tasked to take over and stand by to return the medical team and their equipment to Liverpool. The Brigade was stood down at 01.00h, and returned to station.

089/01 - 26th December 03.05h IRT

The TVLB and Tynemouth Lifeboat were paged in the early hours to respond to a report of a red flare near St. Mary's island. While the lifeboat began a search at sea, members of the brigade went to the first informant’s home to work out exactly where the flare was spotted. It soon became apparent that it had been set of from the land, and that this was a false alarm with good intent, caused by the irresponsible actions of another. The brigade and lifeboat were stood down, and returned to the warmth.

088/01 - 23rd December 17.00h IRT

Coastguard requested that the brigade make way to the helicopter-landing site to meet the RAF Sea King. They were flying in a crewman from an oilrig stand by boat that was suspected to be suffering with meningitis. The aircraft was met by the TVLB, Fire services, police and the paramedics, and the casualty was transferred to the ambulance to be taken for treatment.

087/01 - 13th December 12.20h  IRT + BRT

Tasked by Coastguard to begin a search for a man that had been reported missing, and who was thought to be suicidal. A full search was initiated including the mobilisation of the Backup Response Team, but after two hours the team was stood down when the man was located.

086/01 - 2nd December 10.30h  IRT + BRT

Paged by Coastguard after the Police had requested assistance, after a man had been reported covered in blood walking into the sea from Whitley Bay beach. Cullercoats Lifeboat, who was training in the area, was sent to the scene to begin a search along with the TVLB Backup Response Team. The police helicopter, Blyth lifeboat and the RAF Sea King from Boulmer were also tasked to the area. After an extensive search of the coastline, the man was found and taken into police custody, and all search teams were stood down after over 2 hours of searching.

085/01 - 22nd November 20.10h  IRT + BRT

The TVLB including its Backup Respone Team, Tynemouth lifeboats and the police were called, after reports that a man fishing on the north pier had been swept into the sea by the massive waves breaking over it. The Brigade climbed the locked fence at the entrance to the pier and made their way along to where the man went into the water, braving the waves themselves. The Police helicopter began to search the water inside the pier with the inshore lifeboat 'Cromer Smuggler' while the All Weather Lifeboat checked the river mouth. The helicopter directed the inshore boat to the casualty in the water near the pier end, and they made their way to him through extremely rough conditions with the waves from the pier landing on them. They recovered the casualty, and transferred him to the larger boat so medical aid could be carried out while they made their way to the North Shields ferry landing to meet with the paramedics. The TVLB on the pier began to clear the remaining fishermen, while the vehicle went to the ferry landing to assist with the transfer of the casualty.

Sadly, and despite the continuous best efforts of the lifeboat crew and the paramedics, the man was pronounced dead later that evening. 

084/01 - 19th November 21.54h IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the TVLB after reports of a red flare at North Shields Fish Quay. The team began a search of the area for any vessels in distress, but nothing was found. Again, another false alarm. 

083/01 - 17th November 18.00h IRT

The TVLB were requested to make their way to North Shields Fish quay, where Tynemouth Lifeboat was towing a fishing boat, the Wayfarer, in. A fire had started in the engine room, and the crew had closed the hatches and called for assistance. The boat was brought alongside the quay, where it was met by the TVLB, and a number of firemen. After taking details, the TVLB returned to station while the Fire Brigade dealt with the vessel.

082/01 - 10th November 19.00h IRT

A member of the public on the south side of the river spotted a red distress flare over the Royal Quays Marina. The team made their way to the area, and checked with the marina staff and nearby fishermen, who reported that the flare was further inland. It seemed to have been used as part of a late fireworks display, and the TVLB were stood down.

081/01 - 8th November 19.38h IRT

Called to the RVI landing site to meet Rescue Helicopter 177, which was bringing a casualty with head and back injuries from Cumbria. The patient, medical team and two of the aircraft crew went to Newcastle General Hospital, and the TVLB Landrover followed to bring the airmen and their equipment back to the landing site.

080/01 - 8th November 00.15h IRT

Rescue helicopter 128 was due to land at the RVI site to pick up a patient with severe pneumonia. The casualty was due to be flown to Leicester for treatment, but due to severe weather conditions, the aircraft was grounded at Newcastle airport overnight.

079/01 - 7th November 22.30h IRT

Requested to assist with the Royal Navy Bomb Disposal  Team, who were brought in to deal with a mine that had been brought onboard a fishing vessel. The mine was detonated at 0.30h.

078/01 - 3rd November 03.00h IRT

The Police requested that both the TVLB and Tynemouth ILB be sent to the Swing Bridge in Newcastle, where a woman had climbed onto the roof. She was throwing glass from the windows toward the police below, and threatening to jump. The TVLB arrived on scene, and kept the Coastguard informed of any developments on the scene. The woman was finally brought down at 04.00h and the TVLB retuned home to bed.

077/01 - 2nd November 17.44h IRT

Paged by Coastguard after reports of a red flare seen at the mouth of the Tyne. Tynemouth lifeboat, South Shields VLB, Sunderland VLB and Sunderland Coastguard were all tasked as it became apparent that the flare was launched from south of the river. The TVLB stood down, and the search continued for some time until all teams were finally released to return to station.

076/01 - 30th October 23.00h  IRT + BRT

The Coastguard was alerted to a woman entering the water in Whitley Bay by her sister. She was reported as injured, and the full Backup Response Team were tasked to begin a search. Cullercoats lifeboat began a close search of the shore, while the Police helicopter searched from the air. The TVLB searched along the shoreline both on foot, and using the Landrover. The woman was eventually found walking home to Blyth by the Police, and passed into the care of the paramedics. All teams were stood down and returned.

075/01 - 28th October 16.44h IRT

The Fire Brigade requested support after a report of man and child on the cliff south of Cullercoats bay. The TVLB arrived to find that the Fire Brigade had walked man and frightened child from outcrop of rock. Humber Coastguard commented on how rapid the response was and how impressed they were at the level of personnel attending the incident

074/01 - 23rd October 15.00h IRT

The team were asked to attend the helicopter-landing site in Newcastle to meet the RAF helicopter, which was airlifting a man with heart problems. Due to the reluctance of the watching public to do as suggested, and move away from the proposed landing site, the pilot had to abort his first attempt at setting down, as he considered that the people on the ground were at risk. When the aircraft landed, it was than difficult to keep people away from the helicopter, as they were unaware of the risk that is posed. The casualty was transferred to the ambulance, and taken to hospital.

If the casualty was in urgent need of specialist medical attention, the delay in landing could have put him at serious risk, but it is a regular occurrence on the majority of rescues where the public like to be as close as they can to the 'action' even when it can compromise the operation.

073/01 - 23rd October 08.10h  IRT + BRT

Pagers activated by Coastguard on request of the police, who required the Backup Response Team to start looking for a 67 year old man who was reported missing from his home in Cullercoats. Two teams began a coastal search from St. Georges church north to St Mary's Island, and south to the Priory. The teams worked inland in fields and parks as well as nearby gardens.

The team were stood down at 11.45h, after a body was found near the missing mans home.

072/01 - 17th October 15.00h IRT

Requested to attend the Richardson Road landing site, where the RAF Sea King helicopter was due to land with an injured oilrig crewman. The TVLB had to spend a lot of time moving the herd of cows, which were determined to stay in the part of the field that the aircraft lands in. After a lot of persuasion, they were moved out of the way, but kept trying to come back, and had to be reminded to keep out of the way with much flapping of arms and a stern talking to. The helicopter arrived at 15.30h, and its flight path took it directly over the cows, scattering them about the field, and one even managed to clear a 4-foot high fence, and ran off into Leazes Park. The aircraft landed safely, and the crewman was carried to the waiting ambulance, as he had fallen down a ladder, badly cutting his leg to the point where the bone had been exposed. He was taken to hospital, and the Sea King took off and returned to base, while the Brigade contacted Coastguard to get them to inform the police of the missing cow, so someone could come out to find it. 

071/01 - 17th October 00.09h IRT

Paged by Humber to proceed to North Shields fish quay, where a crewman had fallen from his boat into the Tyne. The Scottish crewman had fallen while stepping from the quayside to the fishing boat berthed alongside, hitting his head on the way down. A crewman from a neighbouring vessel went to his aid, and a rope was tied under his arms to haul him out of the water. The first member of the IRT arrived on scene at 00.14, and as the fishing boat crew had placed the casualty in the recovery position, only had to check that his airway was clear and he was breathing. Humber were informed of the exact location of the casualty to inform ambulance control, which arrived shortly afterwards. Mr. Ross was taken to hospital for treatment, as his condition was apparently quite serious, while the police took details from witnesses and the other boat crew. 

Tynemouth Lifeboat was also paged, but as the casualty was out of the water, they were asked to stand down before they launched.

070/01 - 14th October 13.00h IRT

Coastguard called the IRT to make way to Browns Bay, where a diver was reported in difficulty. The first of the team on scene spoke to the diver, who had been brought ashore by the others in his group, after he found himself unable to swim against the run of the tide due to fatigue. Paramedics arrived and checked him over, before allowing him to go. TVLB took details to pass on to Humber Coastguard.

069/01 - 14th October 06.55h IRT

Paged by Coastguard after they had received a call from a fishing boat 1/2 mile off the Tyne, reporting a collision. The Alun-Nic had apparently struck the Sea Star, putting a hole in its side above the water line. The TVLB were asked to check to condition of both vessels and their crew at North Shields fish quay. The Alun-Nic was undamaged and returned to sea to continue fishing, while the Sea Star continued upriver to Willington Quay. The crew on the Sea Star were unhurt, but a bit shaken, and after getting details the TVLB returned to station.

068/01 - 5th October 17.45h IRT

Humber coastguard received a call that 4 children were in the water off the Rex hotel, and appeared to be in difficulties. The TVLB and Cullercoats Lifeboat were called, but on arrival, the children had made their own way to the shore. Apparently they were just playing, and weren't in trouble. This was a well-intentioned false alarm, and as the seas were running quite high, it could easily have turned nasty for them.

067/01 - 23rd September 14.20h IRT

A 999 call had been received by coastguard saying that a parachute surfer was in difficulty off King Edwards Bay, and the TVLB were tasked to investigate. The man had landed badly, and had to let go of his parachute kite, which was propelling him through the surf, as he risked breaking his leg when it re-inflated. He managed to swim back to the shore and recover the board and kite. The member of the TVLB on scene made sure that he was safe and well, and took details.

066/01 - 23rd September  14.40h IRT

The Brigade was also tasked to rescue a driver who had managed to get his car stuck in the sand in Cullercoats Bay. He was recovered using the winch on the rescue vehicle, and I promised that I wouldn't say too much about this on the site, but it can happen to anyone, really...

065/01 - 22nd September 16.05h IRT

The rescue team were paged by Coastguard, who had received a request from the police to provide radio communications between a BBC film crew and the Sea King helicopter. The filming was for a new series of ‘Junior 999’, which tells the 'real' story of accidents and rescues. It turned out that this incident was one that the TVLB attended, and to a degree ran. Our team was first on scene, before the paramedics, first to the casualty, requested the rescue helicopter, and assisted in protecting the casualty from the aircrafts down blast and with the winching. For some reason the TVLB were not asked to attend the filming, even after the production team had been given a report from the Coastguard, and after the paramedics involved in the incident told the BBC film crew of our involvement. An e-mail has been sent to the BBC expressing our feelings towards being ignored, and we would like to inform the people reading this that, as they watch a re-enactment of a man who has fallen on rocks in Whitley Bay, that the portrayal of the incident is false and in parts fabricated.

One good thing to come of this was the chance to see Donald again, this time on his feet, and to meet him and his brave daughter in better circumstances. I personally don't do this for the fame, because quite honestly, we don't get any. But for a charity, who are doing our best to raise money to provide the best service we can, the occasional recognition wouldn't do us any harm. What I do it for was when Donald came up and said 'Thanks' and I am certain that would go for the rest of the team as well.

064/01 - 18th September 16.05h IRT

A 999 call was received reporting that a surfer was in difficulty off the Briar Dene in Whitley Bay. Members of the TVLB and North Tyneside lifeguards searched from the shore, while Cullercoats Inshore Lifeboat braved the very heavy seas to search the water. Due to the high winds and breaking waves, the crew of the lifeboat showed great skill in launching, searching and returning the boat. Good work well done, and thankfully no one was found to be in distress. 

063/01 - 12th September 17.18h IRT

A member of the public reported two boys apparently in difficulty on the Bears Back rocks south of Cullercoats Bay. On arrival it was seen that they were some of the locals, who are often seen in that area. Both the lifeguards and ourselves advised them to move to a safer place to swim, and the woman who spotted them was thanked for being observant.

062/01 - 10th September 22.10h IRT + BRT

The Back Up Response Team was tasked to begin a full search of the Whitley Bay coastline. The police had found two body boards and two pairs of shoes left on the promenade, and had requested their helicopter to begin a search of the area. The Coastguard was informed and both the TVLB and Cullercoats lifeboat were sent to the scene to assist with the search. Four TVLB teams set out, covering an area from St. Mary's island, down to the High Point Hotel. The crew of Cullercoats lifeboat began a close shore search, in rough seas. After extensive searching of the beach and water, and with nothing found, the search was stood down and all teams returned.

061/01 - 7th September 19.40h IRT

Called to attend the helicopter-landing site, where a 55-year-old man was being airlifted by the Sea King from a ferry in the North Sea. He had suffered a heart attack on the outward journey, and both he and his wife were flown to the HLS, where he was transferred into the care of the paramedics.

060/01 - 6th September 08.55h IRT

Paged by Coastguard to attend RVI Helicopter landing site, where a fisherman was being airlifted by Sea King from a vessel 50 miles out to sea. He had been struck by a cable on deck, and sustained quite severe injuries to his chest, face, arm and leg. The TVLB arrived, and liased with the paramedics and Coastguard, preparing the landing site. The aircraft arrived, and the fisherman was carried from the helicopter to the ambulance, and then transported to the accident and emergency department of Newcastle General Hospital for treatment.

059/01 - 6th September 11.30h IRT

Called to assist Cullercoats lifeboat who were recovering a fishing vessel 1.5 miles off Whitley Bay. TVLB stood watch while the boat brought the vessel to safety, and took details to pass to Coastguard.

058/01 - 27th August 23.01h IRT

Door staff at the Tuxedo Princess (a floating nightclub on the Tyne) had reported to police that they had heard a loud splash from the bow of the boat/club. The police helicopter and ground units conducted an initial search of the area, before Tynemouth ILB and the TVLB arrived to begin a search of the river. After an extensive search by Tynemouth ILB it was decided to stand down and return to station, with nothing found.

057/01 - 22nd August 21.35h IRT

As we were leaving the Watch House after weekly training, the team were paged to reports of red distress flares spotted off the coast near St. Mary's lighthouse. It was discovered that, due to the off-shore mist, the light flashing on top of the mine buoy was being reflected, and looked like a flare. This was a well-intentioned false alarm, and it is good to see that people are still looking out to sea and knows what to do!

056/01 - 15th August 18.44h IRT

Requested to proceed to Newcastle Business Park, where a boat was reported as broken down. Tynemouth Inshore Lifeboat found the stricken vessel, and took it under tow to its moorings at the Royal Quays.

055/01 - 9th August 20.42h IRT

Paged by HM Coastguard at 20.42h after a report from police that there had been a collision between two boats in-between the Millennium and Swing bridges. TVLB arrived on scene and liased with Police and Fire brigade, as Tynemouth Inshore Lifeboat made their way to the incident scene. Three men had taken a small 9m inflatable boat from moorings upriver of the Tyne Bridge, and were making their way past a boat from HMS Calliope, crewed by 10 Navy Cadets. The rib collided with the cadet’s launch, and then careered toward the south quayside. The inflatable struck the quayside, throwing two of the occupants into it and then into the river. The third fell directly into the water, and two were recovered by the cadets and taken to the shore.
A life belt was thrown from the shore to the third man in the water, but he appeared to be unconscious and he floated past. A search was initially conducted by the Police helicopter using its thermal imaging camera initially conducted a search. A full search was then conducted by the police, fire brigade, the TVLB, Tynemouth ILB, the Fireboat, a Police Rib and one of the Tyne Harbour Pilot boats. The casualty who had hit the wall was taken to hospital by paramedics with head injuries. The TVLB and Tynemouth ILB were stood down at 22.20h

Update - just over a week after the incident, the missing man was found a short distance from where he was last seen. A sad final outcome for the incident.

054/01 - 5th August 17.20h IRT

Coastguard requested that the TVLB vehicle, out on local patrol, headed to Blyth as a 19ft yacht was drifting toward the piers without power. Blyth lifeboat had also launched, and was making its way to the stricken craft. The lifeboat brought the boat to Blyth yacht club under tow, and the TVLB checked that the owner was well, and took details to pass to Coastguard.

053/01 - 29th July 22.10h IRT + BRT

The full Backup Response Team were requested by Coastguard, after they had taken a 999 call from a person in the public phone box above King Edward's Bay, stating that his friend was drunk and had gone swimming in his boxer shorts. The TVLB arrived on scene and began a search of the shore, while Cullercoats Lifeboat started a sweep of the bay using parachute flares to light the area. The Police helicopter also arrived, and used its searchlight and thermal imaging camera to search the bay from the air. It was suspected from the outset that the incident was a hoax, from inconsistencies in the information given by the caller. All teams were stood down after these were confirmed by Coastguard and the Police, and returned to station. 

After a busy day at the coast, with over 17 incidents handled by Tyne Tees Coastguard, it was lucky that a real incident hadn't begun, while all of these resources were occupied on a malicious hoax.

052/01 - 29th July 18.20h IRT

Coastguard tasked Blyth Auxiliary Coastguard team to attend an incident where a man in his 20s had fallen over 30 foot into the water at the west pier in Blyth harbour. The TVLB were asked to also attend the incident and assist the Blyth team. The man, who had suffered head injuries in the fall, was recovered, and taken to the waiting ambulance. This is a good example of how neighbouring teams are always available to assist each other with incidents if required, and even though the Brigade is not part of HM Coastguard, we do have a good relationship with our northern neighbour.

051/01 - 29th July 17.30h IRT

A member of the TVLB was tasked by Coastguard to meet a vessel which was being towed into the Tyne by Sunderland Lifeboat, who had already been involved in a major incident off Easington, south of the Tyne. Just as the vessel was making it's way to its moorings, the team were called to the incident above.

050/01 - 29th July 14.10h IRT + BRT

Paramedics on the way to an incident above the Tynemouth Haven requested the assistance of the TVLB to help recover a disabled woman who had fallen over 20 foot from the path. The first of the team arrived and liased with the Paramedics, before requesting the Backup Response Team and getting the Landrover with help from Ian, a crewmember from Cullercoats Lifeboat crew. Brigade member Michael was prepared for lowering down to the casualty, along with Paddy, one of the paramedics. As the rest of the team arrived on scene and prepared the gear for the lifting of the woman, the police had to keep the watching crowds away from the scene of the incident. Rescue 131 and the Air Ambulance were both out on other rescues, which limited the options for how we were going to recover the casualty.  The Fire Brigade arrived, along with their Line Rescue team, who began to prepare their gear to assist the TVLB with the incident. With close co-operation between the two teams, the TVLB and Fire Brigade safely lifted the injured woman to safety, where the ambulance took her to the local hospital. We later learned that other than cuts and bruises, the woman was well.

049/01 - 3rd July 20.20h IRT + BRT

A dive team reported that there was a member of their group overdue surfacing, and the TVLB as well as the local lifeboats were tasked to search for her. The full search team (Backup Response Team) was tasked to begin a shore search from the north pier around to the south of Tynemouth Longsands. As the team began to muster, the diver was found safe and well, allowing all teams to stand down.

048/01 - 3rd July 17.55h IRT

Urgent request from Coastguard to respond to a 999 call reporting two boys in difficulty at the north end of Tynemouth Longsands. On arrival, it was found that the two 14-year-olds had swam from the Bears Back rocks to the shore in rising seas, but stated that they weren't in any danger. Cullercoats lifeboat also quickly launched, but were asked to return to station when the casualties were found to be ashore.  

047/01 - 3rd July 13.50h IRT

Paged by HM Coastguard to attend the helicopter-landing site at Newcastle, where a fisherman was being airlifted with severe head injuries. He had fallen onto the deck of the fishing vessel, and was winched from it by the RAF Sea King 10 miles off Holy Island. The crewman was assisted to the ambulance, and taken to hospital for treatment.

046/01 - 18th June 20.38h IRT

Called to attend an incident at the new Millennium Bridge. A man had jumped into the water, and was being washed down river, with people on the shore throwing life belts to assist him. Tynemouth Inshore Lifeboat, and the Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade were tasked to attend and  South Shields VLB, who were at their watch-house training, also offered their services and were sent to assist by Coastguard. Both VLBs arrived on scene and began a search of the incident area. The casualty was rescued by the Police marine unit, who brought him in a very wet and muddy condition to the shore next to HMS Calliope. He was then passed to the care of the paramedics on scene.

045/01 - 18th June  13.50h IRT

Paged by Coastguard to attend the Newcastle General Hospital helicopter-landing site, where the RAF Sea King was due to arrive with a casualty from Holy Island. An elderly woman had fallen down stairs while visiting the island, resulting in head injuries. Sadly, and despite the best efforts of Holy Island coastguard team and the RAF aircrew, the woman did not survive the incident. The aircraft was then re-directed to Wansbeck hospital, and the TVLB were stood down.

044/01 - 17th June 22.22h IRT

Call by Coastguard to attend an incident on the western side of the Tyne Bridge where a man had been reported as hanging off and threatening to jump. Tynemouth Lifeboat and the TVLB were tasked to attend. The Brigade arrived on scene and spoke to the Police officer in charge, while contacting the Coastguard and lifeboat to inform them of the situation. As one of the Police boats, and Tynemouth ILB arrived on scene, the 25 year old man was brought over the railings and taken to safety. The Brigade and Lifeboat were stood down and returned to station.

043/01 - 10th June  18.40h IRT

Paged by Coastguard to respond to a 999 call reporting 4 persons in the water at Browns Bay. TVLB and the police arrived on scene and began a shoreline search. The police helicopter arrived soon after and assisted with an aerial search of the area. The North Tyneside Council Lifeguards made their way to the cliffs from the harbour, while Cullercoats inshore lifeboat launched to check the area from the sea. The police air support unit was re-tasked and left the area while the ground and water search continued, and the police spoke to the first informant and people in the area who may have seen something. The Coastguard had also requested the assistance of the RAF Sea King from Boulmer to take over the air search. It was found that there had been people in wetsuits jumping from the cliffs into the water, and had left the area when the police and Brigade arrived. The search was concluded and all units were stood down and returned to their stations.

042/01 - 29th May 18.35h IRT

Responded to a 999 call to Coastguard reporting two people in the water in Brown's Bay. The TVLB were tasked to attend and see if the lifeboat was required. Police ground units and helicopter were also on scene, with the helicopter seeing that they had made their way to shore, where Police and Brigade took details from them. 

041/01 - 27th May 16.45h IRT

Coastguard requested that the TVLB begin a search for a 9-year-old boy reported missing to the lifeguards at Cullercoats Bay. The surrounding area was searched by the Brigade, Police and members of North Tyneside Lifeguards. Although the lifeboat wasn't launched, some of the local crew came to offer their assistance with the search. As well as the coast, the search went inland to the local metro station, as the missing boys brother was seen heading that way. After discussions with police, and extensive searching, it was thought that his brother had found the child, and they had made their own way home. The police sent an officer to their address, and the Brigade was stood down.

040/01 - 27th May 02.40h IRT

Page from Coastguard to attend an incident at the Swing Bridge, where someone had jumped off into the Tyne. Just after the pagers had been set off, the police called to say that the man had been recovered from the water, resulting in an immediate stand down for the Brigade. It was later reported that the man had become stuck in the mud, and was rescued by an off duty policeman.

039/01 - 22nd May 23.00h IRT

Request by Coastguard to prepare the helicopter-landing site in Newcastle, and await the arrival of the RAF Sea King. The aircraft was bringing a fisherman to the hospital from a fishing boat over 100 miles out to sea. He had been struck on the head by a block while the nets were being brought aboard, which knocked him to the deck, resulting in head and spinal injuries. The helicopter landed safely, and the man was transferred to an ambulance waiting to take him to hospital.

038/01 - 22nd May 18.50h IRT

Paged by Coastguard on request of the police to attend an incident on the south side of King Edwards Bay. A man had tried to avoid police by climbing the cliffs there, and was surrounded half way up and refusing to come down. The police were concerned that he could fall and requested that the TVLB stand by for his safety. He eventually gave himself up, and was taken into police custody. 

037/01 - 19th May 12.15h IRT

While out on local patrol, the team spotted a crowd in the car park of the Park Hotel, where an elderly woman had fallen. TVLB radioed Coastguard to request an ambulance to attend, while one of the team administered first aid to the injuries to her head. Thankfully she didn't seem too badly hurt, and was taken to hospital for a check-up.

036/01 - 16th May 21.20h IRT

Request from Coastguard to attend the RVI HLS where the RAF Sea King was on its way from Manchester with a sick baby. After waiting at the landing site for some time, an update was requested from Coastguard, who then called RAF flight control. It turned out that the aircraft had changed its flight plan, and had landed at the Freeman hospital instead. The TVLB returned to station

035/01 - 16th May 13.30h IRT

Called by Coastguard to assist the Royal Navy Bomb disposal team deal with an incident off Whitley Bay, where a fishing vessel reported lifting a mine in its nets. TVLB directed the team to Cullercoats bay, where they could launch their boat. After extensive underwater searching, nothing was found.

034/01 - 13th May 14.55h IRT + BRT

TVLB tasked to assist the Police, who had been called to search for a missing 9-year-old boy on the South end of Longsands. The boy made his own way back to his mother when he came to see why the Police helicopter was hovering there, and the full TVLB Backup Response Team was stood down.

033/01 - 12th May 12.25h IRT

While on station performing equipment checks, Coastguard requested that the Brigade make its way to the Black Middens. A small boat had reported itself lost and grounded on rocks. Due to severe fog, visibility was almost non-existent. Tynemouth inshore lifeboat managed to locate the vessel and stood by until high tide to float it off.

032/01 - 7th May 14.55h IRT

Called to an incident at Links golf course in Whitley Bay, where a young girl had fallen from the cliffs onto the rocks below. The TVLB team kept the public back, while the local air ambulance landed in the small area between the cliffs and the sea, a very impressive job by the pilot. The young girl hadn't sustained serious injuries, but was still flown to hospital to be checked out.

031/01 - 6th May 23.25h IRT

Coastguard were alerted by police to a man standing on the High Level Bridge in Newcastle threatening to jump. Tynemouth ILB was called to stand by, while the TVLB were tasked to liase with the police and provide communications between police, coastguard and the boat.  Police rib Sword arrived at 23.30h, allowing the lifeboat and TVLB to be stood down, letting us return to the coast. The man was finally talked down and taken to safety.

030/01 - 28th April 14.30h IRT

A member of the public had reported children playing on the piers at Cullercoats. The Coastguard asked the TVLB to attend to warn them off as they were in danger due to the current sea conditions.

029/01 - 27th April  01.43h IRT

Request from coastguard to attend an incident on the Tyne Bridge in Newcastle, where a man was threatening to jump off. The TVLB mobile was taken to provide communication between the Coastguard, Police and Tynemouth ILB. Both of the coastal teams were stood down at 03.10h upon the arrival of one of the police boats. The police later took the man into custody.

028/01 - 25th April 13.56h IRT

A person was reported threatening to jump from rocks opposite the Rex Hotel in Whitley Bay. On arrival the TVLB stood back as the police recovered the casualty.

027/01 - 22nd April 14.25h IRT

A boat was reported broken down just outside Cullercoats Harbour. Cullercoats ILB and the Brigade were paged to assist, but the crew managed to restart their engines and make their own way home.

026/01 - 21st April 02.00h IRT

Just as the IRT was getting back to sleep, we were again paged to an incident near to the Swing bridge. One of the onlookers to the earlier incident had noticed a man climbing on the outside of the High-level Bridge. TVLB placed one of the team on the Swing Bridge with the lifeboat crew to observe the man, while the vehicle stood-by on the bridge liasing with the police and fire brigade. The casualty was talked down by the trained negotiator at 04.30h, allowing the TVLB and boat to stand down. Thanks must be given to the Fire brigade, who were good enough to provide tea and coffee to all involved, much appreciated!! 

025/01 - 21st April 01.30h IRT

Initial Response Team and Tynemouth ILB paged by Coastguard to attend the Swing Bridge in Newcastle, where three people had jumped into the Tyne after leaving one of the quayside nightclubs. The fire brigade managed to rescue two of them, while the Police helicopter picked up the third, where she was being swept up river.

024/01 - 19th April 11.00h IRT

RAF requested that the RVI HLS be prepared as a man was being airlifted from Wooler to the Hospital. The casualty had been caught up in an electrical explosion, and as the Air Ambulance was tasked to a second job, the RAF Sea King had been requested. On arrival of the helicopter, the casualty, who was conscious and chatting, was transferred to the waiting ambulance.

023/01 - 16th April 15.38h IRT

Paged by Coastguard to attend an incident on the outfall pipe opposite the High Point Hotel in Cullercoats. A man had been reported standing on the pipe, and as the tide was coming in, was in danger of being washed off. As the first of the team arrived, the casualty was knocked from the pipe and did not seem to be making any attempt to swim. A council workman and Captain Hogg waded into the water to save him, bringing him back to the pipe to be met by other IRT members and the Fire Brigade. The casualty was escorted along the pipe, and placed into the TVLB Landrover, which took him from the beach to the waiting ambulance.

022/01 - 6th April 11.45h IRT

Called to visually assist Cullercoats Lifeboat, who had been called to recover a boat that had broken down 1.5 miles off St. Mary's island in foggy conditions.

021/01 - 5th April 16.50h IRT

A boat was reported upturned next to the new Millennium Bridge on the Tyne. The Tynemouth ILB, police helicopter and the TVLB mobile were sent to investigate. It turned out to be half a canoe, which looked as though it had been in the water for some time. 

020/01 - 3rd April 14.10h IRT

A member of the public called one of the Brigade Captains, reporting that a young boy had fallen from the cliffs at the Spanish Battery. On arrival he requested the launch of Tynemouth lifeboat, as the 13-year-old had refused to get into the air ambulance. He was finally taken in the inshore lifeboat to Tynemouth Haven, where he was passed to the paramedics. Luckily his injuries weren't too severe, and he just required a brief check in the hospital.

019/01 - 1st April 19.55h IRT

Coastguard had received a telephone call from a boy who had spotted a boat that he thought was in difficulties off King Edward's Bay. The TVLB were tasked to speak to the boy and see if the boat could be spotted, while Cullercoats ILB launched quickly to search the area. A boat fitting the description was found by the ILB but wasn't in any difficulties. The boy was thanked for his good thinking, and promised that as it was after 12.00h, it wasn't an April's Fool joke!

018/01 - 29th March 20.55h IRT

The RAF control requested that the Freeman hospital HLS be prepared for the Sea King, which was on its way to transfer a baby from the hospital to a unit in Birmingham. On arrival it was found that a football game was in progress. As soon as the aircraft gave its 5-minute inbound warning, the game was cleared, allowing the helicopter to land safely. The baby and support staff were escorted from the ambulance and onto the aircraft, which then made its way to Birmingham. Final score was 0-0 at end of play.

017/01 - 28th March  17.55h  IRT + BRT

Police contacted Coastguard requesting assistance, as a woman was reported missing and could possibly be in danger at the coast. The full TVLB Backup Response Team was called, resulting in 20 Brigades men searching from Cullercoats Harbour to St. Mary's island with the police helicopter. Cullercoats Lifeboat was also called to search, and did a coastal search in very rough seas. At times we worried for the boat, but know how well trained the crew are. The Brigade were stood down at 19.30h and returned to station. The girl later phoned the police, safe and well at a friend’s house.

016/01 - 25th March 14.20h IRT

The owner of a dog reported that it had fallen from the cliffs at Hartley bay, north of St. Mary's. Both the TVLB and Cullercoats lifeboat were tasked to recover it. On arrival it was found that the owner had managed to get to the dog & bring it back to the shore. Both teams were stood down and returned to their stations.

015/01 - 15th March 19.10h IRT

A call to a small boat south east of St. Mary's lighthouse. Found to be an empty boat left by local fishermen. This boat is normally left there, and is a fairly regular cause of well-intended false alarms. 

014/01 - 15th March 13.50h IRT

Called to meet the RAF Sea-king helicopter at one of Newcastle’s hospitals to transfer a seriously ill baby by air.

013/01 - 13th March 16.15h IRT

Paged to investigate an incident by the outdoor pool at Tynemouth where a new surfer had got into difficulties and was being swept toward the rocks. He managed to make his way to shore and to safety. Almost immediately the team was sent to stand by as observers while the Cullercoats inshore boat towed a broken down boat from the mouth of the Tyne back to its berth.

012/01 - 11th March 16.57h IRT

Police requested assistance to Cullercoats Bay, where a man had been reported threatening suicide. On arrival a person fitting the description was seen, drunk, but not in any immediate danger. The Brigade kept its distance and waited for the police to arrive, who then spoke to the person. The vehicle was stood down and returned to station

011/01 - 11th March 15.30h IRT

While out on patrol in the local area, the vehicle was asked to make its way to St. Mary's lighthouse where divers were reported in difficulty. Upon arriving, three of the divers were seen to be in the water about 300m off the shore, unable to make their way back. The team directed the Cullercoats lifeboat to their position, and the divers were quickly picked up. Two other divers stranded on the island were also picked up by the lifeboat crew, as well as two stranded picnickers before all were returned safely to the shore. During the transfer of their equipment, Jimmy from the ILB crew showed his diving prowess recovering a dropped weight from under the water.

010/01 - 11th March 12.30h IRT

During equipment checks, the vehicle was requested to proceed to the outfall pipe off Cullercoats, where a man was reported to be having some sort of fit. On arrival, it was found that he had been walked off by a member of the public and had left the scene.

009/01 - 10th March 08.30h IRT + BRT

An elderly man was reported missing from an old peoples home in Whitley Bay, and requested a search team to cover the coast, as he was a regular walker in that area. The full Backup Response Team met at Whitley bay police station where they were briefed on their search patterns, and began to look from Tynemouth long sands, to St. Mary's island. The team were then tasked to begin an inland search of the gardens and outhouses along the coastline. The Police helicopter and Cullercoats Lifeboat were also sent to search the area at various times during the morning. After 7 hours of searching the teams reluctantly stood down, just before a report was received that a mans body had been found further inland. It was later confirmed as the man we were looking for.

008/01 - 5th March 20.50 IRT

Coastguard called a member of the TVLB, requesting that a team be sent to provide a landing site for the Sea king, which was bringing a man with severe head injuries to the General hospital in Newcastle.

007/01 - 4th March 18.15 IRT

The IRT was paged on request of the ambulance service to assist with a man who had fallen on rocks above Tynemouth long sands. This was the same individual as the 28/01/01 incident. Again he was transferred by the Brigade Landrover along the waterline to the waiting ambulance. 

006/01 - 17th February 19.10h IRT

A vessel called coastguard requesting assistance, as it has broken down 1.5 miles off the Tyne. TVLB were tasked to try to see the boat from a vantage point, and direct Tynemouth Lifeboat to them. As the light was failing, Coastguard tasked Cullercoats ILB to assist with the search. Tynemouth ILB sent up a flare, which then prompted the casualty vessel to fire a red flare showing his position. It was taken under tow and returned to the Royal Quays Marina, where the TVLB took details.

005/01 - 17th February 13.30h IRT

While on station doing maintenance, Coastguard requested that the vehicle proceed to the beach next to Tynemouth Lifeboat station where a shark had been reported in the water. On arrival, it was found to be a dogfish, about 2 feet long, and it had already been taken to one of the local fish merchants. Coastguard was advised that it was still safe to swim in that area!

004/01 - 8th February 14.03h IRT

Details taken from a speedboat broken down and recovered by Cullercoats Lifeboat.

003/01 - 28th January 16.00h IRT

Coastguard received a request from the ambulance service to assist with the recovery of a young man that had fallen from rocks behind Tynemouth Surf Co. above the Tynemouth Longsands. He was in an awkward position, but with the Paramedics, TVLB, Police and Fire brigade all helping, he was safely brought down to the beach and placed into the TVLB Landrover. This was used to transport him along the beach to a waiting ambulance. 

002/01 - 21st January 13.15h IRT

Coastguard received word of a person walking into the water opposite the Rex Hotel in Whitley Bay. The Brigade arrived as the North Sea Volunteer Lifeguards who were training at the time had recovered the casualty. He was taken away for treatment by ambulance, and the Brigade returned to station

001/01 - 19th January 20.00h IRT

Called by coastguard asking us to man the helicopter-landing site at the RVI to meet the RAF Sea king, which was transferring a man who had fallen on a North Sea oilrig, and had possible back and internal injuries. The paramedics, aircrew and TVLB transferred the casualty to the ambulance, which transferred him to hospital.



The Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade. Registered Charity Number 1093237

© T.V.L.B. 2020