Schoolgirl volunteer leaves class for first RNLI call out

Teenager Danielle Marr (left) was joined by mother-of-two Louise McNicoll in what was a first live call-out for the RNLI volunteers. Picture: PA
Teenager Danielle Marr (left) was joined by mother-of-two Louise McNicoll in what was a first live call-out for the RNLI volunteers. Picture: PA
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A teenage RNLI volunteer has dashed out of school to help a broken down vessel on her first emergency call out.

Danielle Marr, 18, was in a science class at Waid Academy in Anstruther, Fife, when her pager sounded in school for the first time.

The teenager, who is in her final year at school, rushed to the Anstruther lifeboat station where she was joined by fellow volunteers at around 10.40am on Wednesday.

They set off to assist a 28ft vessel that had suffered mechanical failure off the coast of Crail, Fife, returning to the station at around 1.30pm.

Mother-of-two Louise McNicoll, 30, another new volunteer, was also involved in the rescue on Wednesday.

The two women have volunteered at the lifeboat station for several months.

Miss Marr said: “I was assisting a junior pupil in a science class when my pager sounded.

“It was a strange feeling as it’s the first time I have heard the pager go off in school and the teachers and staff were great to allow me to exit so quickly.

“The shout itself went exactly to plan as we regularly practise towing the all-weather lifeboat with our D class and vice versa, so it wasn’t the first time that myself or Louise have worked on this task, but it certainly was a different feeling doing it in a shout scenario.”

The teenager has permission to leave class to rescue those in difficulty at sea and carries a pager to alert her to emergency calls.

She is following in the footsteps of her older brother Anthony, who has volunteered at the station since Miss Marr was six.

The two women have volunteered at the lifeboat station for several months, fine tuning their skills in training exercises.

During Wednesday’s rescue operation they secured a towing line to the casualty vessel under the supervision of the coxswain and senior crew before the short journey back to Anstruther harbour.

Ms McNicoll said: “I was getting my son ready for nursery when my pager sounded. I had the added extra of dropping my son at my mum’s house on the way to the station.

“It was great to see the training we practise put into action and having my first shout alongside Danielle was an added bonus.

“The senior crew assisted us in what we had to do and all in all it was a job well done.”

The RNLI have 4,700 volunteer crew members around the UK and Ireland.