Saturday, 17 February 2018

Team net an incident

As the patrol headed out today, the National Maritime Operations Centre requested the team attend a report of a large fishing net washed up at Peveril Point.

Watch keepers at the National Coastwatch lookout had reported the net and were concerned it could be a hazard.

The patrol headed down to the point and found several nets.
Sadly caught in the net were a couple of sea birds so a decision was taken to remove the nets.

A further net was located caught on some rocks so further team members were tasked to assist.

The net was collected up and removed to the boat park for collection by the Town Council , our thanks to them for their assistance.

It’s not always search and rescue incidents for the team but prevention work to avoid accidents or damage to our environment.

Friday, 16 February 2018

Hot Air

The SO and DSO have a regular catch up meeting to discuss the issues of the day, plan training and generally put the world to rights.

It's was such a beautiful morning that we were able to meet up outside today.


Monday, 12 February 2018

Tributes paid to Mike Tomlin

We were sad to learn of the death this week of Mike Tomlin former Swanage Sector Manager.

Mike came to Swanage from the east coast of England in 1986 and looked after the Swanage , St Albans , Kimmeridge and Lulworth teams until 2000.

On behalf of the Coastguard he will be fondly remembered with our thoughts with Fay his wife , children and grandchildren.

Saturday, 10 February 2018

What we do

365 days a year , Coastguards around the UK respond to emergencies.

Sunday, 4 February 2018

Late Night Call

The team was called out around 11.15pm on Saturday night after a member of public saw some lights at the base of the cliffs at Ballard and was concerned that someone was in trouble.

Arriving within minutes, the Coastguard team split into two groups, and  whilst one group went to Ocean Bay and spoke to some local fishermen, the other went to Sheps Hollow to get 'eyes on' through the binoculars. 

The tide was right up, preventing anyone from walking to the source of the light, and indeed preventing anyone from walking back, but towards the north end of the bay there is plenty of beach, even at high water and so there was no immediate danger.   However it soon became apparent that there was no danger at all, the source of the lights was a couple of fishermen who'd been there for 2-3 hours according to the chaps we spoke to at Ocean Bay.  The Sheps Hollow group confirmed that even in the dark it was clear enough to see that folks were fishing, and with the permission of the National Maritime Operations Centre, both groups stood down and returned to station.

We never mind being called out to these types of incident - False Alarms With Good Intent as they are termed. We'd far rather the public called us just in case, rather than not for fear of wasting our time.

Sunday, 28 January 2018

Getting in a tight spot

The team headed down to Durlston today to put into practise the training at the fire tower two weeks ago.

Under the Durlston flats are some large rocks known as rock armour which protect the stabilisation scheme.

There is a risk that people can fall in between the rocks and in this case the team would extract the casualty in a different way to going over the cliff.

The safety brief along with the objectives of the session.

Setting up using nature holdfasts ( the rocks) and locking down the equipment

The frame work is called a quadpod and needs to firmly positioned over the casualty.

The view from below !

And our view down into the tight gap created by the giant rocks.

Saturday, 20 January 2018

Team tasked to person cut off

This morning the team were tasked to the north end of the bay to a person reported cut off by the tide.

The Coastwatch volunteers at Peveril Point spotted the person walking north of Sheps Hollow and were concerned the tide would cut them off.

The Coastguard National Maritime Operation Centre tasked the team to investigate. On arrival at the Ballard Estate the team quickly established the Male was safe and was fishing.

Concerned for a person on the Coast ? 999 Coastguard.

Friday, 19 January 2018

Vertical Rescue

The team headed off to the training tower at Poole Fire Station last night to run through some vertical rope rescue.

Most of our rope rescues involve going over a cliff but there may be times when we need to access a casualty directly from above - such as in rock armour or a blow hole.
This calls for a slightly different technique and the fire station offers a perfect set up with room at the top for observers to see what's going on.

Whilst our rope rescue technicians all took turns at being lowered and operating both main and safety lines, the operators all got to grips with a different 'evac' stretcher used in this type of recovery. Our faithful casualty dummy Ruth Lee was strapped in for a rescue.

Thanks to Poole CG for the loan of the stretcher and of course to our friends at Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue for the use of the tower.

Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Steve is our 'Coastguard of the Year'

We held our annual Presentation Night on Saturday - this is primarily a social evening for the team and their partners, but it's also a good opportunity to review the year just gone, to look through some slides of what we got up to and importantly to present our Coastguard of the Year award.

The Spike Williamson Award is named after a former colleague whose sudden death a few years ago robbed the team of a 'can-do' individual who went the extra mile to support the team both during incidents and outside of them.   Accordingly the award is given to the team member that best demonstrates those qualities and the worthy winner for 2017 is Steve Richards.

This has been Steve's first full year with the team and in that time he has undertaken lots of training to quickly bring himself up to speed, he has attended many incidents, some of them high profile and traumatic, and he has taken our 4x4 vehicle under his wing and continues to look after and care for it.

Well done Steve, very well deserved.

Thanks also to Swanage Royal British Legion for looking after us so well on Saturday.

Sunday, 14 January 2018

Items found on Beach

The pagers sounded for the first tasking of 2018 this morning following the discovery of a number of items on the beach.

The team were tasked to search the shoreline and beach for any further items or perhaps a person in difficulty. The Shannon all-weather lifeboat diverted from its training exercise to do a sweep of the bay and was soon joined by the inshore boat.

After further investigations and a thorough examination of the items which were brought back to the scene by the finder, it was determined that they were unlikely to be linked to someone in difficulty and the teams stood down.