Peterhead RNLI launch to reports of a child drifting out to sea on an inflatable

On Wednesday, August 10, Peterhead RNLI volunteer crew launched to reports of a child drifting out to sea on an inflatable off Scotstown Head.

Inflatables are a growing concern during the summer season (Credit:RNLI)
Inflatables are a growing concern during the summer season (Credit:RNLI)

The volunteer crew launched Peterhead RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat (ALB) ‘The Misses Robertson of Kintail’ at 4.45pm and quickly made way north of Peterhead, assisted by the coastguard, air support and nearby fishing vessels.

On route to the location, the crew spotted a green inflatable found in the water with no person in sight. On instruction from the coastguard, the volunteer Peterhead RNLI crew commenced a search pattern from the location of the found green inflatable.

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On initiating the search, the coastguard confirmed that the child had been recovered safely to the shore and was in the care of UK Coastguard coastal teams from Peterhead and Fraserburgh.

While checking on the recovered child, it became apparent that a teenager, who had gone to the aid of the younger child in the water was starting to feel unwell. Peterhead RNLI supported the casualty from the beach back to Peterhead before transferring the teenager to a paramedic team for further treatment.

Patrick Davidson, Duty Coxswain, said: "Being called out to a young person reported in the water is one of the most dreaded by the crew. We can’t stress enough how dangerous inflatables are in the open sea. On this occasion, it was a good outcome and strong multiagency collaboration. I want to thank the member of the public, who went to into the water in aid of the child, and the crew for their professionalism and excellent casualty care.

“Inflatables can be fun when used safety, but every summer they are one of the most common reasons our lifeboat crews and lifeguards are called to action."

If you are bringing an inflatable to the beach, follow these safety tips:

Choose a lifeguarded beach Use your inflatable close to the shore and between the red and yellow flags Ensure children are supervised Never use inflatables in big waves or when the orange windsock is flying

If you do get into trouble in the water, Float to Live. Lean back, using your arms and legs to stay afloat. Control your breathing, then call for help or swim to safety. In a coastal emergency, call 999 or 112 for the Coastguard.