Hartlepool RNLI launched in search for swimmer reported in difficulty on New Year's Day

Hartlepool lifeboat service spent several hours searching for a swimmer reported to have been seen in difficulty.

Saturday, 1st January 2022, 3:21 pm

RNLI volunteers received the alert at 10.40am on Saturday, January 1, after a report of a swimmer in difficulty in the sea off the 'sandy’ coach and car park at Seaton Carew.

The inshore lifeboat Solihull was launched at 10.51am and arrived on scene within minutes and began a search of the area along with the local Hartlepool Coastguard Rescue Team.

Hartlepool RNLI’s all weather lifeboat Betty Huntbatch also joined in the search at 11.18am.

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Hartlepool RNLI inshore lifeboat Solihull launches to take part in the search. Picture by Tom Collins.

After a search of the area and nothing being found, both boats were stood down by Humber Coastguard at 12.40pm.

They returned to the Ferry Road boathouse where they were refuelled and made ready again for service by 1.10pm.

Deputy Launch Authority Steve Pounder said: “Once again a great turn out from the crew meant we launched quickly and started to search the area as requested by Humber Coastguard but with nothing found we were eventually stood down by the Coastguard and returned to the boathouse where the boats were refuelled and made ready for service to allow the volunteer crew to return to their homes and spend the rest of New Year’s Day with their families.”

All RNLI crew members are volunteers and the service operates 24 hours a day, every day of the year.

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