'The best you can receive' - Hartlepool RNLI crew praise emergency training which helps save lives at sea

Volunteers at Hartlepool RNLI Lifeboat Station have had a vital part of their crew training funded by a charity.

Tuesday, 9th July 2019, 9:19 am
Updated Wednesday, 10th July 2019, 2:15 pm
Hartlepool RNLI volunteer crewmembers Adam Reith, left, and Jake Oates. Picture: Tom Collins.

Adam Reith and Jake Oates from Hartlepool, recently travelled to the RNLI College in Poole, Dorset, to complete the charity’s Crew Emergency Procedures course, which was provided by Lloyd’s Register Foundation.

Adam, 28, was inspired to join up as a volunteer crew member for the RNLI in 2007 when he watched a lifeboat crew at Sheringham out at sea on a training exercise.

He now works as a Master of a wind farm vessel, and continued to volunteer when he moved from Norfolk to Hartlepool.

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Business owner and developer Jake Oates, 19, joined the town’s volunteers two years ago. He wanted to ‘give something back’ to the local community.

He added: “It’s one of the most rewarding things I have ever done.

“From a simple boat tow job to pulling someone out of the sea it’s great to be part of the crew here.”

The course sees volunteer crew being trained in a variety of crucial subjects includings how to deal with fires aboard lifeboats, how to ‘abandon ship’ in the event of an emergency, team survival swimming and the importance of lifejackets.

It also included sessions on the correct use of flares, fire extinguishers and throw bags.

Of the training, Adam said: ‘The training is probably the best you can receive and gives us tremendous confidence to carry out our roles when needed.”

The sessions took place in the Sea Survival Centre at the RNLI College, and welcomed RNLI volunteer crew members from around the UK and Ireland.

The training was funded by Lloyd’s Register Foundation, which helps to protect life and property by supporting engineering-related education, public engagement and the application of research.

The Foundation has committed to funding the RNLI’s Crew Emergency Procedures course for a second five-year period until December 2020.

This additional funding of £1.06million brings their total support for RNLI crew training to just over £2.46million since 2008.

More than 3,000 RNLI volunteer crew members have now received the training thanks to Lloyd’s Register Foundation’s funding.