Tynemouth RNLI lifeboat station

Injured Angler Rescued on Christmas Eve By RNLI lifeboat and Coastguard Helicopter After Falling On Rocks

The casualty is winched by Coastguard Rescue Helicopter 912 from Tynemouth RNLI Lifeboat. Photo: Owen Humphries/PA

AN injured angler was rescued on Christmas Eve in a joint operation involving Tynemouth RNLI lifeboats, Paramedics, Coastguards and a Coastguard Rescue Helicopter after he broke his ankle falling on rocks.

The alarm was raised at 09:25 when the man fell at the bottom of cliffs at Frenchman’s Bay, South Shields.

Humber Coastguard scrambled both Tynemouth RNLI all weather and inshore lifeboats, Coastguard Rescue Helicopter 912 from Humberside. and a shore-based Coastguard Rescue Team to support Paramedics already en route to the incident.

As the lifeboats approached Frenchman’s Bay, the inshore lifeboat took a stretcher ashore while the all weather lifeboat stood by a short distance out to sea.

The inshore lifeboat crew went ashore to find the casualty being treated for his injuries by a paramedic from the NHS Hazardous Area Response Team who had been lowered down the cliff by the Coastguards using their cliff rescue apparatus.

It was decided that the best approach to getting the man, who was in considerable pain, to hospital would be to take him on the stretcher from the beach in the inshore lifeboat, transfer him to the all weather lifeboat then winch him from the lifeboat deck to the helicopter which was due to arrive imminently.

The operation to get the man onto the all weather lifeboat took just a few minutes and the paramedic travelled with the lifeboats. Once on the all weather lifeboat he was given painkilling gas.

The Coastguard helicopter lowered their winchman, also a paramedic, down to the all weather lifeboat and he prepared the casualty for airlifting before a basket was winched down to the lifeboat. The man was transferred into the basket and winched up to the helicopter which flew him to Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary.

All other search and rescue teams were then stood down and the lifeboats returned to station, taking the paramedic to shore where he was reunited with his team.

Lifeboats: 17-20 Spirit of Northumberland & D-693 Mark Noble