Swanage and Poole RNLI join forces to rescue man with head injury

A multi-agency evacuation effort was launched after a yacht heading towards Poole Harbour reported that a crew member was drifting in and out of consciousness.

Lifeboats from Swanage and Poole, the coastguard search and rescue helicopter 175, coastguard teams and ambulance crew responded to the emergency call from the 11 metre yacht that was in Poole Bay, six miles south of the Southbourne coastline. The request for medical assistance was received just after 6.30 pm on Sunday 30th October 2022.

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Coastguard helicopter 175 at Poole landing space
Southbourne Coastguard

Volunteer coastguards returned the paramedic to the search and rescue helicopter 175 at the Poole landing site

Man discovered semi-conscious on the floor

It’s understood that the man on board the yacht had gone below deck and, shortly afterwards, was discovered semi-conscious on the floor with head injuries.

With sea conditions rough, a 2 to 3 metre ground swell and buffeted by south westerly winds both Poole and Swanage lifeboats transferred crew members onto the yacht.

Bringing with them first aid kit and oxygen, they were able to assess the injured man and administer casualty care.

Also arriving was a paramedic from the coastguard search and rescue helicopter, who was winched down onto the Swanage all weather lifeboat and then transferred to the yacht.

“Strapped into a stretcher”

Swanage Lifeboat Station reported:

“After a brief discussion about evacuation options, it was decided to transfer the casualty from the yacht to the all weather lifeboat and run directly to the chain ferry steps in Poole Harbour where an ambulance was available.

“The casualty was strapped into a stretcher for the journey and the transfer took place in the lee of Studland Bay where the sea state was milder.”

At the North Haven ferry steps the injured man was transferred over to the ambulance staff assisted by Poole Coastguard and taken to hospital.

Meanwhile the yacht continued its passage to Poole Harbour and the lifeboats returned to their stations.

Sandbanks Ferry at night
Library image

North Haven steps at the mouth of Poole Harbour where the Sandbanks Ferry arrives and departs

“Very good teamwork in challenging conditions”

Poole Lifeboat Station volunteer helm Jonathan Clark said:

‘It was very good teamwork in challenging conditions helping a poorly casualty. We wish the casualty a speedy recovery’.

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