Rescue figures released

Hartlepool's all weather lifeboat in action
Hartlepool's all weather lifeboat in action

HARTLEPOOL’S award-winning lifeboat team rescued 48 people from danger at sea last year.

The town’s RNLI volunteer lifeguards were called into action 47 times in all weathers in 2012.

The station was the least busies of four RNLI bases in the North of England.

Sunderland had the most call outs which launched 100 times and rescued 100 people.

Michael Vlasto, RNLI operations director said: “The figures show that our volunteers dedicate a huge amount of their time to saving lives at sea.

“To know that they are on call 24/7, every day of the year is reassuring for all of us who venture out to sea around the UK and Ireland.

“And it’s not just our crew who are committed to our charity - they wouldn’t be able to carry out their lifesaving work without the incredible generosity of the public and I would like to say a huge ‘thank you’ to all those who support the RNLI, whether by giving up their time or by making a donation.”

Hartlepool’s heroes RNLI volunteers received national recognition when they won a Pride of Britain Award for their rescue of 17-year-old Neil Robson, from Peterlee, who got trapped in sand at Seaton Carew.

Nationally, the RNLI had a quieter 2012 compared to the previous year which the charity put largely down to wet weather keeping people away from the coast.

RNLI lifeguards responded to 14,519 incidents and helped 16,414 people on beaches in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

But its Flood Rescue Team had their busiest year on record, deploying 11 times nationally including once on Teesside.

Most calls for help were to recreational craft that had got into trouble.

This Friday, RNLI supporters will raise money for their local station with the charity’s annual SOS fundraising day.