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Thursday, 10 July 2014

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Dog alerts coastguard to man stranded at sea

A MAN and his dog were rescued from the sea off Walney after becoming trapped by the tide.

Coastguard rescue
RAF Sea King transports man rescued at sea.

Following a 999 call by a local member of the public at 5.45pm yesterday Walney Coastguard were tasked to investigate a report of a person and a dog in the water north of Earnse Bay at Walney.

The member of the public was concerned for the safety of the person on the incoming tide. On arrival on scene, Walney Coastguard could see objects in the water, but were unable to determine what they were.

An attempt to wade out with water rescue gear was made, but the objects were about 300 metres offshore and too far out to reach. An RAF search and rescue (SAR) helicopter was requested, and Duddon Inshore Rescue were proceeding to scene.

At first the objects appeared to be seals, but then one was identified as an Alsation dog that was recovered, but then kept trying to get back in the water. Paramedic assistance had been requested, and a Sea King helicopter, call sign Rescue 122 was tasked from RAF Valley.

Duddon Inshore Rescue arrived on scene and pulled a male from the water, and returned him to Walney Coastguard waiting on the shore.

The man was found to be still breathing, and taken to Cumbria Ambulance Service paramedics waiting at the car park at Earnse Bay.

Rescue 122 landed at the car park and took the casualty to Furness General Hospital, while the police took care of his dog.

A Walney Coastguard spokesman said: “This was one very lucky man, with three fortunate points working in his favour. Firstly, it was very opportune that he was spotted by the first informant; secondly, his dog wanting to go back in the water suggested that the other of the two objects visible was indeed a person and not a rock or seal as was first thought; and thirdly, to survive for over an hour in water that is still very cold at this time of year is incredible.

"He managed to tell us that he had fallen and injured his knee and was unable to move. His rescue was a good example of inter-service working involving Walney Coastguard assisted by Duddon Inshore Rescue, Cumbria Ambulance Service, Police, and RAF Sea King Rescue 122. We also appreciated the assistance given by Gary Powell of North West Kitesurfing by allowing the use of his facilities at Earnse Bay to shelter the casualty while paramedics stabilised him before transfer to the helicopter."

Have your say

Well I think this is a fantastic story to lift peoples' hearts. Thank you to all the wonderful people who worked together to save this poor man and his very faithful friend. Without you the story could have been a very real tragedy. I simply cannot understand why some people always look for negatives and want to criticise.

Posted by Barbara on 4 May 2012 at 18:36

It may surprise you to learn that you need water for a boat and there wasn't enough depth to launch the Coastguard's own boat, and would have meant a 40 minute delay bringing it right round Walney, hence the request for Duddon to bring theirs - which is smaller, draws less water, and was much closer.

Posted by Coastie on 4 May 2012 at 13:40

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