Salmond hails lifeboat crew heroics

FIRST Minister Alex Salmond was visiting Queensferry Lifeboat Station today to meet some of Scotland's heroes of the sea.

The lunchtime visit included a tour of the premises and an opportunity to chat to the crew and hear about the RNLI's vital work.

Mr Salmond said: "The RNLI performs hugely important and valuable life-saving service. The institution has 45 lifeboat stations in Scotland, with the lifeboats crewed mostly by volunteers who give up their own time freely.

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"The crew here at Queensferry rescued 118 people last year during 70 separate incidents, the busiest lifeboat in Scotland.

"Earlier this month I had the privilege to present their colleague, Dunbar Lifeboat coxswain Gary Fairbairn with a [email protected] Award.

"Gary saved two lives in extreme gale force winds and ten-metre high waves off the coast of Dunbar.

"This is just one of many incidents our lifeboat crews respond to every year in Scotland and it demonstrates the courage, leadership, judgement and exceptional boat handling skills of all of our heroes of the sea, who put their own lives at risk daily to save others in danger."