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




Initial Response Team Calls - 107                    Backup Response Team Calls - 8

107/04 - 26th December 16.45h IRT

Tasked by Coastguard to attend an incident at the Tyne Bridge where a woman had been reported as in the water. She had jumped from the bridge, and was now in the water alive, but refusing any offer of rescue. She was finally recovered, and passed in to the care of the police and ambulance crew by the Tyne & Wear Fire boat.

106/04 - 24th December 14.05h IRT

Paged by HMCG to attend the RVI landing site for the arrival of Rescue 131 who was landing to pick up a medical team that was travelling to Hull to pick up an ill baby. Team transferred successfully. Stood down; to await return of helicopter later that evening, helicopter eventually returned directly to Boulmer.

105/04 - 12th December 01.35h IRT

Called after reports of a person in the river Tyne off North Shields. A fisherman had fallen while getting onto his boat, but was recovered by the police, allowing the TVLB to stand down almost immediately.

104/04 - 09th December 00.15h IRT

Paged to attend the RVI helicopter landing site, where the RAF Sea King Helicopter was inbound with a 17 month old child with severe breathing difficulties, that had been airlifted from Holy Island. The child was transferred to the waiting ambulance, and the team were released at 01.45h

103/04 - 27th November 14.45h IRT

Coastguard received a 999 call from two persons who claimed to be stuck on the mud banks near the Tyne pedestrian Tunnel. South Shields VLB were tasked with searching the south side bank, with the TVLB taking the north. After an extensive search, and with the Coastguard being unable to regain contact with the caller, it was decided that this was a malicious hoax. 

102/04 - 26th November 02.57h IRT

The team were asked to attend an incident upriver in Newcastle on the Redhugh bridge, where a man was reported to be threatening suicide by jumping in to the river. On their way to the incident, it was confirmed that the person was now in the care of the police, and that all teams could stand down.

101/04 - 24th November 12.30h IRT

Paged to investigate a report of a possible body in the water 100meters off the north end of Browns Bay. From the shore it was not possible to determine exactly what the object was, so Cullercoats RNLI were asked to attend and investigate further. On their arrival the object was found to be an adult seal.

100/04 - 17th November 17.30h IRT

Tasked to assist with an investigation into an overdue fishing vessel to North Shields. The boat had been reported overdue by the Tynemouth Lifeboat crew, and a full scale search was commenced. This search lasted over 24hours, with three All-weather  RNLI Lifeboats, RAF Helicopters and Nimrod aircraft, police fixed wing aircraft, numerous Coastguard Rescue Teams and a great number of local fishing boats. The search was finally called off late on the 18th of November with sadly nothing positive found. There was a reported sonar reading on the sea bed in the area of the boats last known position, which is being investigated. The TVLB expresses our great sadness, and our sympathies to the families and friends of the two fishermen involved.

099/04 - 16th November 21.17h IRT

Paged by Humber Coastguard to investigate a report of a young male who was apparently both drunk and suicidal on the rocks opposite the Esplanade Hotel in Whitley Bay. The first member of the TVLB on scene spoke to the man and managed to persuade him off the rocks and away from danger. The person then attempted to run from the scene, but was stopped from doing so by the police, who were keen to speak to him and offer him assistance.

098/04 - 14th November 02.15h IRT

Called to prepare the RVI Hospital landing site, where the RAF Helicopter was bringing a man with head injuries for emergency treatment at Newcastle General Hospital. The aircraft was due at 0300h, but due to fog was delayed until 0335h. The casualty was passed into the care of the waiting ambulance crew, and the aircraft returned to base, allowing the team to head back to Tynemouth, and then back to bed.

097/04 - 13th November 12.52h IRT

Called by Coastguard after they had received a 999 call from a man who had managed to get his car stuck on the beach while recovering his jet ski. As there was no risk to life, Coastguard were only able to ask of we would like to investigate, and help if we felt able. On arrival it was found that the car was not only stuck, but now in fairly deep water, as the tide was rising fast. The owner had been attempting to recover his jet ski after it had been damaged after being hit by a large wave, causing it to drift onto Longsands. With the assistance the ability of a Vauxhall Vectra to float in rough seas, a local resident with a tractor (who also has the dubious honour of being a TVLB team members father), that it was possible to recover the car to shallower water. The AA mechanic was then able to get the car started and off the beach. The gathered crowds gave a cheer at this point, obviously impressed with the unexpected Saturday afternoon entertainment. The TVLB were then helped to recover the jet ski by a local fisherman and his tractor. (Thank you Mr. Stocks). Photos of this rescue can found by clicking HERE.

096/04 - 12th November 12.13h IRT

Paged to investigate reports from the public of a body floating outside the north pier at Tynemouth. Cullercoats RNLI were also tasked to the scene, but it was found to be a marker buoy in the rough seas. Both teams were stood down, with the first informant thanked for their concern and vigilance.

095/04 - 9th November 16.00h IRT

HM Coastguard called a Brigade Captain, relaying a request from the RAF to have the Freeman Hospital landing site manned for the arrival of Sea King 131. The aircraft was flying in with a crewman from a Dutch submarine roughly 150 miles offshore. Due to the long distance, the helicopter refueled at an oil platform, before continuing on to the Newcastle Hospital. The decision was also taken to land the aircraft at the RVI landing site to transfer the crewman to the Newcastle General Hospital, so the TVLB prepared that site instead. The aircraft landed safely, with the team assisting with the transfer of the unconscious casualty, the medical team and their equipment to the waiting ambulance.

094/04 - 7th November 19.50h IRT + BRT

Paged to urgently attend an incident at the Tyne Bridge in Newcastle, where a person was thought to have jumped or fallen into the river. The full Backup Response Team were called, and a search commenced on the north side of the river, along with Police, the Police Helicopter, Fire Rescue, the Fire Boat and North East Ambulance crews. After an extensive search, nothing was found.  This callout was also an historic moment, as it was attended by the TVLB's first female Brigade member, the first since our formation 140 years ago!

093/04 - 7th November 16.50h IRT

Called after a request for assistance from the police to investigate wood washed ashore on the Black Middens rocks. Two Brigade team members along with six Police Officers found the wood, which a member of the public thought might have been part of a chest or coffin, and were able to confirm that it was just driftwood.

092/04 - 6th November 17.35h IRT

Paged by Coastguard to investigate reports of a 16ft Yacht that was possibly drifting off the north end of Whitley Bay beach. On arrival a white catamaran was located, without lights, close to the shore. As it wasn't possible to contact anyone onboard, Cullercoats RNLI was requested. On their arrival they found that the boat had weighed anchor for the night, but had chosen an area that was uncovered at low tide. The helmsman of the Lifeboat advised them that they should move, and that they should display correct lights on their boat during the night. All teams were stood down and returned to station.

091/04 - 30th October 04.00h IRT

Called to an incident at Watts Slope for a car reported in the water. On arrival it was found that the tide had swamped the car, but the occupants were safe on the shore. After a couple of attempts to drag the care back to the land using the TVLB Landrover, the tractor unit from Cullercoats lifeboat, who had also been paged and were standing offshore, was asked if they would be willing to assist. It was at this point that another final attempt was made by us to remove the car from the sea, which was successful. All teams were stood down, with the owner of the car left explaining exactly how it all happened to the police.

090/04 - 28th October 15.30h IRT

While on local patrol at St. Mary's lighthouse, the team were stopped by members of the public who were concerned about an apparently stray dog that was playing in the heavy surf. The team managed to catch the dog (possibly with experience gained from the incident on the 23rd!!) and found from the collar tag that it had come from a pub in Monkseaton. It was transported back there, and re-united with its grateful owner. Drink was offered as a means of saying thanks, but as the lads were on patrol, refused.

089/04 - 23rd October 13.55h IRT + BRT

Request received from Coastguard to assist in the recovery of a Spaniel dog that had fallen down cliffs north of St. Mary's Island. Members of the Initial Response Team arrived, and while 2 took the team Landrover off-road to the cliff top, another 2 donned lifejackets and walked the shoreline to where the animal was reported. As it was just after high water, it was decided to be too much of a risk to walk the dog back along the shoreline, and the Backup Response Team were requested. A team member was lowered over the cliff to the dog, and was then winched back with the animal which was reunited with the owner. In total, nine members of the TVLB attended this incident, although 7 kept their feet dry during it.

088/04 - 18th October 18.40h IRT

HM Coastguard received a call from a Tynemouth resident reporting their concerns for a surfer off King Edward's Bay. Members of the initial response team arrived and spoke to nearby fishermen, who confirmed that the surfer had made his way to the shore.

087/04 - 3rd October 14.15h IRT

Paged to observe a tow being carried out by Cullercoats RNLI on a 16ft fishing vessel into the Tyne. The boat was safely moored at the Royal Quays Marina, and the two onboard found to be safe and well.

086/04 - 4th September 16.43h IRT + BRT

After receiving reports of an overdue dive boat, Humber Coastguard paged the TVLB to begin a search from the Whitley Bay shoreline. The IRT team were almost immediately stood down, as the boat had been located. There was then a concern that not all divers were accounted for, and the Backup Response Team were tasked. As the team were preparing, they were stood down as all persons were located.

085/04 - 29th August 13.50h IRT

Humber Coastguard tasked the TVLB from their patrol to the RVI helicopter landing site, as Rescue Helicopter 131 was heading in with a casualty from a Seahouses caravan park. The casualty, a middle aged man, was suffering from severe head injuries, and was transferred from the aircraft to a waiting ambulance, and then to Newcastle General Hospital for emergency treatment.

084/04 - 29th August 12.20h IRT

During a local area patrol, the TVLB rescue vehicle were sent to watch a windsurfer who was in difficulty while Tynemouth RNLI Inshore lifeboat made their way to it. The windsurfer was then taken to South Shields. The patrol was then continued.

083/04 - 28th August 17.55h IRT

Paged to attend RVI HLS to meet Sea King Rescue Helicopter 131, who was bringing in an injured climber from the Cheviots. The climber, suffering from face and chest injuries, was transferred by ambulance to Newcastle General Hospital, with the TVLB transporting an RAF crewman and rescue equipment back to the aircraft from the hospital.

082/04 - 18th August 19.30h IRT

A member of the public at the Spanish Battery car park reported an overturned yacht with a person in the water, at the mouth of the Tyne near the north pier. The TVLB took their rescue vehicle along the pier, and were able to confirm that the casualty was in the care of the local sailing club rescue boat. Tynemouth ILB were also tasked to this incident, but were waylaid by a second stricken craft by the Black Middens. Both boats were towed into Tynemouth Haven, with details taken for Coastguard records.

081/04 - 15th August 11.10h IRT

A swimmer was spotted in difficulties off Sharpness Point in Tynemouth by the North Tyneside Council Lifeguards, one of whom had entered the water with a rescue board to assist him. Cullercoats RNLI were out on exercise, and were called to help, as the lifeguard was unable to get directly to the shore due to the currents off the point. The Lifeboat collected the casualty and lifeguard, and took them to Cullercoats Bay, where after a medical assessment of the 65 year old man, it was decided to take him to hospital as he was suffering from mild hypothermia. Once this had been done, the TVLB continued with their patrol.

080/04 - 15th August 10.25h IRT

During a local patrol, the TVLB rescue vehicle was tasked by Humber Coastguard to keep watch on a tow being undertaken by Tynemouth ALB, which was bringing a 60tonne fishing vessel back to the Royal Quays Marina. As the watch was being done as the boats entered the Tyne, the TVLB were asked to assist with incident 81

07904 - 14th August 14.00h IRT

Paged to assist the Council Lifeguards at Tynemouth Longsands, after a dog was reported stuck on the north side of Sharpness Point, and that the tide was heading in. On arrival, a lifeguard and member of the TVLB managed to get to the animal, which was barely above the rising water, and he was removed to safety. It was obvious that the animal was injured, and he was placed in the back of a TVLB members 4x4, and driven to the beach base. A lifeguard remembered that a woman had called into the base that week, reporting a dog similar to this one, and Northumbria Police were contacted to see if they had any record of this report. Thanks to the Police, we were able to make contact with the owner, and the dog was then transported first to a vets in Wallsend, before onward to Newcastle to be assessed. Sadly it was found that the dog had a broken back, and was put to sleep. The animal had gone missing on Monday night, and it was suspected that he had spent 4 nights at the base of the cliffs.

078/04 - 8th August 12.50h IRT

During a local patrol, the TVLB rescue vehicle was tasked to Colliwell Bay in Seaton Sluice, where a man had been heard shouting for help. Cullercoats RNLI were paged to attend the incident, with concerns that it was a repeat of the incident from the 7th of February. On arrival, and after talking to the person who dialled 999, a middle aged man, part of a group who were drinking alcohol on the shoreline, was located and confirmed as the person who had been calling for help. After the reasons for the team being sent there, he explained that he had been in difficulty, but had managed to get to safety. The team were somewhat sceptical of this, but had to take him at his word. The TVLB and Cullercoats ILB were stood down by Humber Coastguard.

077/04 - 3rd August 20.45h IRT

Tasked to attend the Freeman Hospital helicopter landing site to meet RAF Sea King Helicopter 128, which was bringing a patient from a hospital in Hull.

076/04 - 28th July 16.05h IRT

HM Coastguard requested that the team attend the Fish Quay Sands, after a member of the public called reporting a small boat heading out in to the river with 4 persons on board, in a very un-seaworthy state. The first member of the team on scene asked that they return to the shore, so their pleasure craft could be inspected. The 4 teenagers were in a fiberglass dingy, measuring 7ft by 3.5ft, with plastic fish boxes as seats, and planks as oars. They were unable to paddle in a straight line, and were very very unstable in the water. They were also without even the basic lifesaving and distress equipment, although, by the size of the boat, had they been wearing lifejackets, one person would have had to stay on the shore!!

075/04 - 26th July 11.30h IRT

Paged to investigate a pile of clothing found in Browns Bay, Cullercoats, by a member of the public. On arrival, the team found some rather embarrassed children retrieving the clothing after their swim. A false alarm with good intent.

074/04 - 24th July 15.44h IRT

Called to meet a broken down boat being towed to Royal Quays Marina by Cullercoats RNLI.

073/04 - 22nd July 11.18h IRT

We received an urgent request to prepare the RVI helicopter landing site, as the rescue helicopter was in the process of rescuing the pilot and navigator from an RAF Tornado fighter jet that had ditched 7 miles off the Northumberland coast. Both crew had ejected safely, and managed to get into their survival dinghies, before the Sea King from Boulmer recovered them from the sea. They were brought to the RVI HLS, and transferred to the waiting ambulances, before being taken to the Newcastle General Hospital for medical assessment.

072/04 - 22nd July 10.00h IRT

A request was received from the local beach lifeguards to assist with one of their team, who had been badly cut by broken glass placed into one of the refuse bins on the beach. The TVLB Landrover was used to transport him after initial treatment, to hospital, where he received 6 stitches to the gash.

071/04 - 21st July 22.05h IRT

The Brigade were asked to watch and meet a small fishing vessel which Cullercoats ILB were towing into Willington Quay. The small craft was met, and the owner was advised that lifejackets, distress flares and possibly a marine band radio to call for assistance would be beneficial, as the only way Coastguard knew of their situation was from a message passed on by a passing yacht.

070/04 - 19th July 22.05h IRT

Paged after Humber Coastguard were informed of an incident where a person was reported in the river in Newcastle. The team were stood down almost immediately, as it was found to be a dog in the water, which had been rescued by the Fire Rescue boat.

069/04 - 18th July 14.35h IRT

The TVLB, while on local patrol, offered assistance to the North Tyneside Council Lifeguards, who were dealing with a crew member of a Royal Navy vessel visiting the Tyne, who had sustained a badly broken toe. She was removed from the beach with the TVLB Landrover, and transferred to hospital for treatment.

068/04 - 17th July 21.00h IRT

Tasked to the south end of Tynemouth Longsands, where a woman was preparing to enter the water to rescue her dog, putting her own life at risk in dangerous seas. Thankfully as the Brigade arrived, the dog had returned to the shore to its owner. Cullercoats RNLI were stood down before they launched.

067/04 - 14th July 21.30h IRT

Paged to observe a boat being towed in to safety by Cullercoats RNLI to Cullercoats harbour.

066/04 - 8th July 18.05h IRT

North Tyneside Council employees, who were on the beach clearing a dead seal, were alerted by a group of boys to the plight of two of their friends, who were being swept out to sea on the tide at the north end of Longsands in Tynemouth. On arrival, the first member of the TVLB confirmed the position of the two boys, and the imminent launch of Cullercoats RNLI, (one of the fastest launching boats in the UK) A second TVLB member then ran into the 7ft waves, and made an attempt to reach the two boys, with other arriving members wading in to assist. The two casualties who were thankfully now being pushed back to the shore, were grabbed, and pulled back to the surf, and to dry land. Cullercoats Lifeboat was close at hand, and checked the surf for any other people in the water, while the Police helicopter also did a quick search to confirm that everyone was out of the sea. Both the boys, aged 12 and 13, were experiencing the effects of shock, and extreme cold, and were taken by ambulance to hospital. The Brigadesman who ran into the water has since decided that trying to swallow the waves is not the most effective method of lifesaving at sea!

065/04 - 7th July 21.50h IRT

While on patrol, members of Sunderland VLB spotted two red distress flares from their station, in the South Shields area. This set in  motion a large scale air, land and sea search for any craft in danger. Tynemouth RNLI were sent to sea to search, alongside Rescue 131 from Boulmer, while Sunderland Coastguard Rescue Team searched from the land. Sunderland VLB were sent upriver, after a number of 999 calls reported that the flares were seen in the Tyne Dock area. Tynemouth VLB, who were on station for training, were asked to assist in the search from the north side of the river, and confirm with the local marina that all craft had returned. After a very extensive search, all teams were stood down.

While returning to their station, Sunderland CRT were tasked alongside Rescue 131 to recover three late night swimmers from the sea. Two casualties were recovered by members of the Coastguard Rescue Team and RAF crew from the aircraft, with the third casualty, after being recovered by friends, walked away from the scene. This third casualty was stopped by members of Sunderland VLB, who passed her into the care of Sunderland CRT. All three casualties were taken by ambulance to South Tyneside General Hospital.

064/04 - 1st July 14.40h IRT

Paged to investigate a report overheard on an open radio channel of a person injured at Cullercoats. A member of the public had overheard what was thought to be an incident involving a person fallen from the pier, and he had contacted the Coastguard to report it. On arrival, and after discussions with the Council Lifeguards, nothing was found to be out of order, and the team was stood down.

063/04 - 27th June 16.30h IRT

The brigade was tasked to Longsands beach Tynemouth to observe an capsized catamaran who's plight and need for assistance had been noticed by a local lifeguard on Tynemouth longsands. Once on scene the brigade and lifeguards monitored the casualty's movements until Tynemouth RNLI Inshore lifeboat arrived on scene and towed the vessel into the Tyne piers, and then escorted it back to its launch site at South Shields.

062/04 - 27th June 16.04h IRT

While on coastal patrol, TVLB members were alerted to a 90 year old woman who, while walking with her daughter and son-in-law, had started to feel very weak and collapsed to the ground no more than 2 metres from the vehicle. A brigadesman immediately gave the women Oxygen, while an ambulance was requested via Humber CG. The brigade then cared for the casualty with the assistance of an off-duty doctor, before the ambulance arrived and the lady was taken to hospital. A mention should also be given to RAF Boulmer's SAR Helicopter crew, who offered their assistance while returning from taking an unwell diver to hospital.

061/04 - 26th June 22.37h IRT

The Brigade were paged by HM Coastguard to attend the Redheugh Bridge in Newcastle where a man was threatening to jump into the river Tyne. Four Brigadesmen arrived on scene and stood by alongside Ambulance and Fire teams as well as the Fire Boat, while the Police negotiated with the Gentleman. After extensive negotiations, the casualty came back onto the correct side of the railings, and was taken away by the Police, at which point the brigade returned to station.

060/04 - 22nd June 20.25h IRT

Paged to investigate after a 999 call reporting an apparently unmanned boat off St. Mary's Lighthouse. Blyth RNLI who were out on exercise were also asked to investigate, but on the arrival of the first member of the TVLB, it was confirmed as a locally owned boat secured at its usual location just off the beach. A false alarm with good intent, and the concerned members of the public there were thanked for their call.

059/04 - 18th June xx.xxh IRT

Called to investigate a drifting fishing boat that had been recovered by a pleasure boat in the Tyne. Details passed on to Coastguard to be forwarded to the police.

058/04 - 18th June 03.15h IRT

Coastguard called the TVLB to attend an incident where a person was reported to have either fallen or jumped from the Millennium bridge in Newcastle, into the river Tyne. On the way, we were informed that there was possibly now two people in the water, and that Tynemouth RNLI inshore lifeboat, and the RAF Rescue Helicopter from Boulmer were also on their way to the scene. On arrival at the bridge, a man was lifted from the water by the Police, and brought up from the bridge pontoon by Fire Rescue. All teams were stood down and returned to station.

057/04 - 15th June 12.55h IRT

Paged to check the medical condition, and obtain the details of persons onboard a boat being towed into the Royal Quays Marina by Tynemouth RNLI.

056/04 - 14th June 12.30h IRT

While on local area patrol, asked to remove a vehicle that had become stuck below the tide line on Whitley Bay beach. The vehicle was removed without incident, and before the sea reached its position.

055/04 - 12th June 14.40h IRT

A member of the TVLB, during a Scout water activity day in Cullercoats Harbour, was alerted by a member of the public to a boy stuck on cliffs south of the bay. A 14 year old male had been climbing cliffs with his friends, and had reached a point where he was unable to move, as the clay on the cliff was so unstable. Had he slipped, he would have been unable to stop his descent, and would have fallen 20 foot to the rocks below. The TVLB rescue vehicle, which was on local patrol, was called, while the member of the TVLB used a rope to secure the casualty, with the assistance of other scout leaders. Once the TVLB Landrover arrived, the boy was hauled up the cliff to safety, and checked for injuries.

054/04 - 11th June 19.00h IRT

Paged to check the medical condition, and obtain the details of persons onboard a boat being towed into North Shields Fish Quay.

053/04 - 10th June 11.00h IRT

Members of the TVLB were involved in the rescue of a 16 foot speedboat that had broken down just outide Cullercoats Harbour, and had drifted aground. Cullercoats RNLI were tasked to recover the craft, and asked to tow it back into the harbour. The TVLB had the dubious honour of pushing the boat off the beach, resulting in the second pair of wet shoes that day

052/04 - 10th June 04.50h IRT

Tasked by Coastguard after a request for assistance from an ambulance crew dealing with an incident in Whitley Bay near the Rex Hotel. A 25 year old man had been climbing on the sea wall, and had fallen between 30-40 feet onto rocks below. Due to the awkward position he was in on rocks, the TVLB were paged to provide assistance and additional equipment to recover the casualty to safety. He was placed onto a spinal board, before being then placed into our new basket stretcher, and then carried over the rocks and through sea water by the TVLB, Fire Rescue and Ambulance crew personnel. He was then placed into the back of the TVLB rescue vehicle, and driven off the beach to the waiting ambulance, before his transfer to North Tyneside Hospital A&E. He had apparently suffered head, arm and back injuries, as well as a fractured ankle.

051/04 - 6th June June 09.55h IRT + BRT

Paged to attend an incident in Seaton Sluice, where a car was reported over the cliff and due to the possible severity of the incident the Backup Response Team was mobilsed to attend the scene. The team was stood down on the way, after the police confirmed that the car was empty, and had apparently just been dumped.

050/04 - 5th June 17.00h IRT

Called to obtain details, and check the condition of persons aboard a fishing boat that was being towed into the Royal Quays Marina by Tynemouth RNLI All Weather boat.

049/04 - 4th June 18.10h IRT

Tasked alongside Cullercoats RNLI to a broken down pleasure boat off St. Mary's Lighthouse. The boat was taken under tow, and met at the Royal Quays Marina, where the TVLB checked the condition of the occupants, and took details.

048/04 - 3rd June 21.05h IRT

Called to assist with the rescue of a kite surfer that had been becalmed about 1/2 a mile offshore of Sharpness Point. Two canoeists had made an attempt to tow her to safety, but had been quickly tired by the rip tide off Tynemouth Beach. Cullercoats RNLI made their way to the casualty, and brought her to safety.

047/04 - 29th May 06.00h IRT + BRT

Requested by the police to assist in a search for a missing man in Whitley Bay. A late night reveller had last been seen heading towards the sea just before 01.00h that morning, but with nothing found by either police on the ground, or India 88, the police search plane, it was assumed that he had walked home to Wallsend. After further enquiries found that he had not returned home, an 18 person search team from the TVLB including members of the Backup Response Team scoured the shoreline from St Mary's Lighthouse to Tynemouth pier. India 88 was again tasked to search, but after a 2 hour ground search, the team was stood down.

We later learned that the missing person had made the decision that, as he was quite drunk, he would be better off getting a room in a local hotel and sleeping it off, before making his way home. He later returned home safe and well.

046/04 - 28th May 12.18h IRT

Paged to rescue a 12 year old boy who was stuck on cliffs on the south side of Cullercoats Harbour. The boy was about 15 foot above the rocks, and had become stuck after watching his mobile phone fall and smash below. Members of the TVLB recovered the casualty by rope rescue.

045/04 - 27th May 15.50h IRT

While on local area patrol in Tynemouth, the TVLB were asked to provide medical assistance for a canoeist who had suffered a large cut to his leg. The wound was assessed, cleaned, and dressed, and the man made his way home, while the TVLB patrol was resumed.

044/04 - 21st May 19.00h IRT

Called by Humber Coastguard after they received a number of 999 calls regarding a boat in distress off Whitley Bay. After investigations by the TVLB, it was seen to be a small fishing boat out in rough seas hauling in lobster pots. Again, a false alarm with good intent.

043/04 - 20th May ??.00h IRT

The Brigade were called by HM Coastguard to investigate a report of a vessel in trouble just of Tynemouth Longsands.
 Having spoken to the first informants it was discovered the boat was at anchor and was in no immediate danger.
A false alarm with good intent.

042/04 - 17th May ??.00h IRT

The Brigade were called by HM Coastguard to assess a situation in Tynemouth. They had been contacted by the Police after it had been reported that three youths were trapped by the tide on the Bears Back rocks at the north end of the Tynemouth Longsands.
Upon arrival it was found that the police had questioned the youths, who had made there own way ashore, and were also wearing wetsuits. As the tide was dropping they were in no danger, this was considered a false alarm with good intent.

041/04 - 9th May 16.00h IRT + BRT

While on patrol past Cullercoats Bay, the TVLB vehicle was flagged down by a Police officer, who asked if they could assist with a possible incident there. A folded pile of child's clothing had been found at the base of the ramp, and there was a concern that the owner was still in the water. The Backup Response Team were tasked to assist with the search, with a TVLB search team of 15, 4 members of the North Sea Volunteer Life Guards, Police air support and Marine units, and Cullercoats RNLI. After nearly 2 hours of extensive searching, with nothing found, and no-one reported as missing, all teams were stood down.

040/04 - 5th May 21.40h IRT

Paged to attend an incident on the Tyne next to the Copthorne hotel, where a person was reported in the river. A 60year old man had jumped into the water, and on arrival had been rescued after a member of the Fire Brigade had jumped in and swam to him. Details were taken, and it was confirmed that there were no other casualties.

039/04 - 4th May 08.00h IRT

Called by Coastguard to attend the RVI helicopter landing site to meet Sea King 'Rescue 131' that was transporting a woman who was in the process of being rescued from her car, after it had broken through barriers and fallen 100 feet over cliffs in South Shields. The team prepared the landing site, and waited for the Fire Brigade, Coastguard rescue team and ambulance crews to rescue the woman from the wreckage of her car and prepare her for transport to hospital. On arrival she was seen to be in a very serious condition, and was carried from the aircraft to the waiting ambulance.

038/04 - 28th April 20.45h IRT

While on station for training, members of the TVLB spotted a yellow hull in the mouth of the Tyne. A few sailing boats were out, and it was assumed that this was one of them from the local sailing club that had capsized. It was kept under observation, and after the single crews second attempt to right it, the TVLB Landrover was dispatched to the sailing club to see if they had a rescue boat on duty. The RNLI were also contacted direct and warned that they may be getting a job soon. After the crew person began to wave for assistance, Coastguard requested the launch of Tynemouth RNLI inshore boat to attend. During this time, the rescue boat was seen to make its way towards the casualty craft, but sadly went straight past it, and into Tynemouth Haven, where it was advised by the TVLB that it should return to the casualty, which is did. The sailor was rescued from her boat, and taken to the clubhouse to dry off and warm up. Tynemouth RNLI stood watch while the rescue boat recovered the upturned craft, before returning to station.

037/04 - 24th April 22.25h IRT

Paged after Coastguard received a report of persons trapped in the mud banks on the riverside at Dunston, which is upriver of Newcastle on the south bank. The TVLB made their way there, and arrived just as the Fire Brigade had managed to reach two young boys on a rowing boat, and bring them to safety.

036/04 - 24th April 16.00h IRT

Team members on local patrol noticed a large group of teenagers crowding around an unconscious girl. She had consumed a large volume of alcohol, and while an ambulance was called, the TVLB maintained an open airway on the girl due to a vomiting and choking risk. An ambulance arrived along with the police, and the teenage girl was taken for treatment.

035/04 - 24thApril 14.05h IRT

Tasked while out on patrol to assist with a car stuck in the sand on Whitley Bay Beach. A tow rope was used to remove the stricken vehicle from the sand, and back to tarmac

034/04 - 21st April 16.44h IRT

Paged to investigate a report of a body in the sea near St. Mary's Lighthouse in Whitley Bay. Cullercoats RNLI was also tasked, as there was a concern that the casualty could be from a boat that was in distress. On arrival the Police and Fire Brigade were already on scene, and the casualty was confirmed as coming from the shore, and that a boat was not involved. The Lifeboat was asked to stand by to see if they could assist with the recovery of the body, as the tide was coming in, making a recovery hazardous. The police marine unit arrived, and with the assistance of a member of the TVLB, the body was placed into our basket stretcher, floated out to the waiting lifeboat, before being transported to Cullercoats boathouse.

033/04 - 21st April 11.48h IRT

After a request from the RAF, the team were paged to attend the Freeman hospital landing site to assist with a patient transfer from Newcastle to Birmingham. As Coastguard had only been given 10 minutes notice, it was decided that there was no safe way to get the vehicle to the site, and the team were stood down.

032/04 - 17th April 10.15h IRT

Paged by HMCG to attend an incident of a seal that was washed up on rocks in Brown’s Bay, Cullercoats The seal was a young grey seal, about 6 months old, and after consultation with the RSPCA it was decided to leave the seal alone as it looked to be in a reasonable condition. The seal was marked, and the RSPCA inspector planned to visit the area the next day to see if it was still about.

031/04 - 13th April 14.40h IRT

Paged after reports from members of the public about jet ski owners playing dangerously close to children at Cullercoats. The TVLB went to the scene, and as expected, the only jet ski owner assured us that he was observing all speed limits, and had not been anywhere near the children playing. The marine division of the local police also attended, and spoke to the jet ski owner.

030/04 - 9th April 17.30h IRT

While assisting the North Sea Volunteer Lifeguards move rescue equipment, the TVLB were tasked to investigate a report of a boat on fire. It was found to be a mixture of the boats colour and the deck lights, a false alarm with good intent.

029/04 - 5th April 15.20h IRT

While on patrol, tasked to provide assistance after reports were received of a man threatening suicide from buildings above the beach at Whitley Bay. After an hour of discussions, he was eventually talked down.

028/04 - 4th April 10.00h IRT

The TVLB were sent to observe a boat that had broken down, and was under tow by Tynemouth RNLI. Details were taken of the vessel, and of the crew for Coastguard

027/04 - 3rd April 18.10h IRT

Tasked to a broken down boat off Cullercoats Harbour while returning the vehicle to station after providing support for a British Divers Marine Life Rescue course. A member of South Shields VLB was in attendance on this incident, which was quickly resolved by Cullercoats RNLI, who took the boat which had propeller problems, under tow into the harbour.

026/04 - 28th March 20.40h IRT

Called to attend an incident on the Tyne Bridge, where a man was threatening to jump into the river. Tynemouth RNLI inshore boat were also sent upriver to stand by, where they were joined by the Fire Brigade boat. After over an hour of negotiations between the man and the police, he was finally talked down.

025/04 - 28th March 18.20h IRT

Paged to attend an incident where a young boy was reported to have jumped into the river Tyne. Initially stood down as he had been rescued, but then sent to have a word with him about his actions, and the consequences of them

024/04 - 28th March xx.00h IRT

Called to attend a broken down fishing boat that was being towed to its berth by Tynemouth Lifeboat.

023/04 - 19th March 17.00h IRT

Humber Coastguard received a 999 call from a woman who was at North Shields fish quay, reporting a spaniel dog in the river, and a frantic owner planning to jump in after the animal. The TVLB and Tynemouth RNLI were again paged, and race to the scene. Thankfully the pet had been recovered from the water, and was safe ashore. Both teams were stood down.

022/04 - 19th March 14.05h IRT

The Tynemouth VLB were paged to assist a search after a canoe was spotted in the Tyne, upriver of Newcastle, with what appeared to be a body floating with it. Tynemouth RNLI were also tasked, as were the Police Helicopter, and Police RHIB. On arrival, the TVLB assisted with the search, and the canoe was found with severe, but what looked to be old damage. After an extensive search by all teams, with nothing further found, the canoe was taken out of the river by Tynemouth ILB, and put ashore for safe disposal. It later transpired that the canoe had already been found further up river and brought ashore, but had been put back into the river before the council had collected it for disposal.

021/04 - 13th March 16.00h IRT

After receiving numerous 999 calls reporting a surfer calling for help offshore at Tynemouth, Humber Coastguard paged both the TVLB and Cullercoats RNLI to attend the incident. On arrival, and after speaking to the first person who called in, it was found that another surfer had helped the man out of the rip tide, and back to the shore, where he had made his way quickly to his car. We have found in Tynemouth that, on the rare occasion that a surfer gets into trouble off Tynemouth, the other members of the local surfing community are quick to help them, normally resolving the incident before the emergency services arrive.

020/04 - 29th February 17.50h IRT

Humber Coastguard received a report of two people cut off by the tide on a rocky island near St. Mary's island. On arrival the two people, fishermen, were in the process of wading through the water back to the shore. All team members were stood down from the incident, and returned to station.

019/04 - 25th February 16.15h IRT

Paged to investigate a sighting of an object off the coast of Whitley Bay. It was found to be the Ordinance Buoy being thrown about by very heavy seas. A false alarm, and the team was stood down.

018/04 - 21st February 17.45h IRT

During the previous incident, the TVLB were called to assist with a medical emergency on the pier, where a person had collapsed. We took our rescue vehicle onto the pier, and alongside the RNLI lifeboat crew, administered first aid. As it was suspected that the man was suffering from a heart problem, he was given oxygen, and closely monitored until the ambulance crew arrived on the scene. He was then placed into the vehicle, and transported the half mile (in reverse) off the pier, before he was transferred into the ambulance.

The person from the previous incident was then walked off the pier.

017/04 - 21st February 17.00h IRT

Humber Coastguard paged the TVLB and the RNLI boats from Tynemouth station after they received a request for assistance from the police who where attending an incident at the end of the north pier. A man was threatening to jump into the sea, but was being persuaded not too by police officers on scene. The TVLB and RNLI boats kept a safe distance from the man, but were ready to get him from the water if he did decide to jump. He was eventually talked away from the edge, and taken into custody by the police.

016/04 - 16th February 15.00h IRT

Paged by Coastguard to attend an incident on the Tyne, where a speedboat was sinking with 4 persons on board, and had lost engine power. The incident was well upriver, west of Newcastle in the Newburn area, but thankfully a member of the team was able to attend as he was in the area at the time. The casualty managed to get his boat aground at the Derwenthaugh Marina, where it was met by a member of the TVLB who assessed the incident, and was able to stand the lifeboat and remainder of the rescue team down. Once all occupants of the boat were confirmed safe and well, the incident was closed.

015/04 - 15th February 17.20h IRT

Request from the police to Humber Coastguard, after a report was received of a man threatening suicide from the Marconi Point cliffs north of Cullercoats Harbour. The TVLB attended, as did Cullercoats RNLI inshore lifeboat, with both teams staying out of view of the man so as not to alarm him. Thankfully a police officer was able to talk him into coming over to the safer side of the cliff fence, and he was eventually taken into police custody. Both teams were stood down by Humber Coastguard.

014/04 - 14th February 12.30h IRT

Coastguard received a 999 call from a boat drifting towards rocks north of St. Mary's island in Whitley bay. A fuel line had broken, causing their engines to fail. Members of the TVLB made their way to the scene, and found the casualty vessel, keeping it observation while the RNLI inshore lifeboat from Cullercoats raced to the scene. the Inshore boat took the stricken boat and quickly took them under tow, returning them to Blyth, with all three persons on board safe and well. The boat was only using a mobile phone to contact the emergency services, rather than a marine band radio, even though in fog it is much easier to locate a vessel using its radio signal.

013/04 - 9th February 14.14h IRT

A member of the public dialled 999 and reported a person in the water off Sharpness Point in Tynemouth. It was suspected by the description given that it could be a surfer, and on arrival this was confirmed. The person who made the call was thanked for her vigilance. 

012/04 - 8th February 11.15h IRT

Paged to investigate a 999 call reporting a fisherman in the water or trapped by the tide north of St. Mary's lighthouse. Cullercoats RNLI were tasked from training to also attend, as was the RAF Sea King from Boulmer, that was airborne and heading to the lake district. On arrival it was found that the person had managed to make his own way to the shore, and once his condition had been checked, all teams were stood down.

011/04 - 7th February 15.30h IRT

The team attended an incident at Seaton Sluice, where four young girls had been washed into the sea from the sea defences. Fishermen recovered two of the girls, with the third being rescued by a member of Northumbria Police. The fourth casualty was pushed back towards the shore by the directed down draft of the Police helicopter, where she was also rescued by the police officer. Blyth Coastguard Rescue Team, Blyth RNLI inshore lifeboat, RAF Rescue helicopter 131, Fire Brigade and Ambulance Service were all in attendance. Sadly, despite the best efforts of the medical team, the fourth casualty to be rescued, a 12-year-old girl, did not survive.

010/04 - 28th January 20.45h IRT

While on patrol, Humber Coastguard requested that the team investigate a report of someone in difficulty on the end of the north pier at Tynemouth. A member of the public had spotted a light on the pier, and went to Cullercoats RNLI boathouse to report it, which in turn passed the information to Coastguard. The TVLB team spotted what was possibly a person, but decided that more light was required, so the search lamp in the watchouse was used to assist in the search. This made it easier to see that there was someone there, possibly stuck on the pier, which was being battered by the sea, resulting in 30-foot high waves. Two members of the team donned lifejackets and began to make their way to the entrance to the pier tunnel, which would allow them safe passage to the end, but were forced back by the breaking waves. Humber coastguard made the decision that as we had made contact with the person using the search lamp, and no indication had been made for immediate rescue, then rather than risk loss of life to the team, the person was to be left until low tide. The team stood down and returned to station.

009/04 - 26th January 16.35h IRT

Paged along with Cullercoats RNLI to investigate a report of a surfer in difficulty off Tynemouth Longsands. On arrival it was found that he had made his own way to the shore. All teams stood down

008/04 - 24th January 15.35h IRT

Urgent request from the RAF to provide support at the RVI helicopter landing site, where Rescue Helicopter 131 was inbound with an injured climber. The team made their way to the scene, and assisted with the transfer of the casualty.

007/04 - 21st January 19.00h IRT

A 999 call was received by Coastguard reporting fishermen stuck on rocks at Browns Bay in Cullercoats. The TVLB attended and Cullercoats RNLI were also launched. The lifeboat found two men with head torches fishing at the waters edge, and along with investigations by the TVLB it was found that their looking around had given the impression that they were signalling for help. Another FAWGI.

006/04 - 20th January 10.00h IRT

After receiving a report from a member of the public regarding a boat they thought may be on fire, the initial response team were paged to investigate. After keeping watch on the boats in the area, it was deemed to be a false alarm with good intent (FAWGI) and the team stood down.

05/04 - 16th January 16.35h IRT + BRT

The team were paged after Northumbria Police contacted Humber Coastguard asking for assistance in searching for a man who had been reported missing, and possibly heading to the coast. The police helicopter was out searching, and the TVLB were joined by Cullercoats lifeboat who began a close shore search. The conditions were rough, with a force 4-5 wind and a sea swell of 2m. The RAF rescue helicopter from Boulmer also diverted from their training to join the search for the man. The Backup Response Team was called, and joined the coastal search. After one and a half hours of searching, all teams were stood down as the man had been found.

04/04 - 6th January 01.10h IRT + BRT

Humber Coastguard received a request from Northumbria Police for assistance with a search for a man that had been reported missing. The Initial Response Team was paged, and the Backup Response Team requested. A full search was conducted from the end of the North Pier at Tynemouth, to the beach at Whitley Bay, where our neighbouring Coastguard Rescue team continued the search to the lighthouse at St. Mary's island. Once the coastline was thoroughly searched, the teams moved inland to the streets and back lanes next to the coast. After two hours searching, the team was stood down, and we were able to debrief and return home.

003/04 - 5th January 12.55h IRT

Paged by Coastguard to assist in the rescue of a small coble (fishing boat) that was sinking off the mouth of the Tyne. Tynemouth Lifeboat was sent to the boat while the TVLB stood watch over the stricken craft. A RNLI crewman was put onboard with a water pump, and the coble was taken under tow back to its berth.

002/04 - 4th January 16.00h IRT

Called by Humber Coastguard to provide a team to prepare the helicopter landing site at the Freeman hospital in Newcastle, where a baby was being flown in from Manchester for specialist treatment. The team arrived, cleared the site, and assisted with the safe transfer of the baby, in its incubator, to the waiting ambulance.

001/04 - 1st January 02.05h IRT

Paged by Coastguard to investigate reports of red flares launched in the Tynemouth area. The team responded and found that the distress flares had been fired over land as a replacement for fireworks to celebrate the New Year. Police were informed and asked to investigate, as this is a prosecutable offence.



The Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade. Registered Charity Number 1093237

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