Both Swanage lifeboats launched after multiple red flares fired

Three people were rescued from Swanage Bay when their boat sank after both of the town’s lifeboats responded to a number of red flares being fired.

The distress flares went up on the afternoon of Monday 22nd May 2023, spotted directly out to sea from the main Swanage beach.

Swanage all weather lifeboat launching

Swanage’s all weather lifeboat launched after flares were sighted

Three people recovered from sea

A crew on the inshore lifeboat was first to launch, with the all weather lifeboat just minutes behind, shortly before 2pm.

The inshore lifeboat was first on scene and located a vessel which had recovered three people from the water a few minutes earlier.

Their boat had sunk with little warning, and although they had managed to fire some flares they ended up in the water.

All three were getting cold so they were transferred to the all weather lifeboat, then landed ashore where they were taken into the lifeboat station to warm up and be checked over as they had swallowed some water during the incident.

In action again, Swanage lifeboat launches after red flares are fired
Gary Street

Three rescued crew were transferred to the all weather lifeboat

Stricken boat posed danger to navigation

The inshore lifeboat remained on scene with the casualty vessel as its bow was still floating slightly proud of the water and posed a danger to navigation.

The crew collected up all the floating debris and drifted down tide until the all weather lifeboat arrived back on scene.

Swanage in-shore lifeboat
Don Williams

Swanage inshore lifeboat responded after multiple red flares were fired

Casualty vessel eventually sank

A spokesperson for Swanage RNLI said:

“The casualty vessel was getting lower and lower in the water as the air escaped from its bow and a few minutes later sadly it sank.

“No further debris was found and with the situation now resolved both boats were free to return to station.”

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