Hovercraft rescues woman at Arnside

The Morecambe RNLI Hovercraft helped to rescue a woman and two dogs cut off by the tide at Sandside near Arnside yesterday.

Arnside Coastguard Rescue Team were also sent to her aid when the alarm was raised at 2.35pm.

Morecambe’s volunteer RNLI crew members were out on a training exercise at the time and immediately diverted to Arnside.

Once at the scene, Morecambe Hovercraft navigated the channels liaising with Arnside Coastguard to reach the person in difficulties, The hovercraft brought the woman and her dogs to the waiting Coastguard shore support teams.

Kevin Jackson, RNLI Duty Launching Authority, said: “This incident emphasises the importance of encouraging the public to check tide times and how this may affect their walks before venturing out onto the tidal flats especially in the Morecambe Bay Arnside area.”

The woman rescued near Arnside was among 93 people rescued by Liverpool Coastguard in five different incidents on Sunday afternoon as many people ventured out on the coast to enjoy the sunny weather.

The first call was just after 1pm when four people stranded near Fleetwood were brought ashore by the Fleetwood Coastguard Rescue Team.

The Lytham Coastguard Rescue Team were then tasked to a report of 70 people cut off by the tide at Blackpool near the South Pier. Blackpool Beach Patrol and the Blackpool RNLI Lifeboat brought everyone safely back to the shore.

Half an hour later, Liverpool Coastguard received reports of two separate groups, one of five people and one of nine people including four children, who had become stranded on sandbanks in Blackpool off Norbreck Castle. Fleetwood Coastguard Rescue Team were sent to assist in getting them safely back to the shore.

Coastguards have urged people to check the tide times before they set out in future.

Liverpool Coastguard Watch Manager Su Daintith said: “We know that on a beautiful day like today that people don’t want to waste any time getting to the beach in order to soak up the sunshine. But just two minutes spent checking the tide times (and there are plenty of resources available where you can find these) could mean the difference between a carefree day and a Coastguard Team coming to your rescue.”

High tide times are published every week on page 2 of The Visitor and page 10 of the Lancaster Guardian.