‘Struggling’ paddle boarders rescued by Swanage RNLI

Two groups of paddle boarders – a total of six people – got caught out when the wind picked up in Studland Bay in Dorset.

Swanage RNLI launched both boats at 6.17 pm on Thursday 22nd June 2023 to initially help a group of three paddle boarders, while a Swanage Coastguard team monitored the situation from the beach.

Swanage Lifeboat in Swanage Bay
Library image / Carlotta Barrow

Swanage RNLI headed across Swanage Bay towards Old Harry following reports of paddle boarders needing assistance

“Cold but unharmed”

The three paddle boarders were reported as needing assistance near Old Harry.

Swanage Lifeboat Station reported:

“Swanage’s D-class inshore lifeboat (ILB) and all-weather Shannon class relief lifeboat (ALB) were launched to locate and assist several paddle boarders struggling in Studland Bay

“Contact was made with a yacht, who had picked up two of the casualties and had them, cold but unharmed, on board.

“The yacht’s skipper reported that the third paddle boarder was still in the water some way from their position.

“The ILB located this third paddle boarder and took them on board. After a little confusion as to where they had launched from they were returned to shore to the care of waiting coastguard volunteers.”

In the meantime, the ALB had taken the other two casualties on board to be warmed up in the wheelhouse. They too were returned to shore via the ILB and finally all the boards and paddles were taken ashore as well.

Old Harry Rocks
Library Image

The view from South Beach across Studland Bay to Old Harry, near to where both groups of paddle boarders were rescued

Another group of paddle boarders nearby

While this incident was taking place, the lifeboat crew was monitoring a further group of three paddle boarders who were close to the cliff towards Old Harry.

Swanage Lifeboat Station added:

“Beginning its return to Swanage, the ILB diverted to pass close to this group to check that they were OK. The group asked for assistance to get back to South Beach, so all three and their equipment were taken onto the ILB and transported to the coastguard waiting ashore.

“With all six paddle boarders safely ashore, both lifeboats returned to Swanage to be washed down and re-fuelled.”

Swanage Coastguard vehicle at Studland Beach
Lobrary image / Swanage Coastguard

Medical incident at Shell Bay

On the same day, Swanage Coastguard also assisted the South Western ambulance service at Shell Bay in Studland with a person who required urgent medical treatment.

The team carried the person, described as having a medical incident, on a stretcher across the beach to the ambulance.

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