Sunday, 31 August 2008


Deputy blog mentioned the "fire bucket" button in the helicopter...well here it is, despite a good look round we couldn't find a bucket with sand in it?

Now wheres the manual when you need one!

And just take a look at the stereo system!

Saturday, 30 August 2008


Is it me or does our new helicopter have a happy smiling face?

Friday, 29 August 2008


Yes the woodpeckers appeared to go home early both days.

Thursday Night - 2 trimmed!

Friday Night 5 trimmed!

They are back on Monday to finish the job.

Thursday, 28 August 2008

Newsflash- Trees being felled!

.......................08:39 and the trees are coming down.

Wednesday, 27 August 2008

Peveril Point - Touchdown.

Rescue Helicopter 106 touched down at Peveril Point at 18:56 this evening for a bit of PR. It was a great opportunity for the public to see the helicopter first hand and ask lots of questions.

Pointing at the Fire Bucket Button
Member of Public: ‘What’s that button do?’
Pilot : ‘Dunno, I haven’t pressed it yet.’
Member of Public:’ No seriously, what’s it do?
Pilot ‘Seriously, I don’t know.’

The Boss kept the lifeboat chaps off the ‘copter …“Get your sticky hands off my Chopper!”

While Austen was nearly spotted doing a catalogue pose.


For the building work to start, there has to be some work done on the trees at North Beach Car Park.

Yesterday that work was meant to start, however despite a good search of each tree I couldn't find a tree surgeon stuck up in any of them!

Monday, 25 August 2008

Coastguard ‘Freebies’

Bank Holiday Monday saw Swanage Coastguard out on Patrol. After two jobs – a missing child and a yacht dragging its anchor over in Studland – Austen and Gareth set about doing a bit of PR on Swanage Beach.

Giving out ‘SeaSmart’ goodies to the kids:-

11 Calendars
42 Magnetic badges
76 Goody Bags
217 SeaSmart Beach thing-ami-bobs
…and 519 key rings.

Not a bad patrol, good PR, happy kids and less stuff to move to our new Station in a few months time! Everyone's a winner!

Sunday, 24 August 2008

Break down?

Its amazing what can be spotted whilst walking around Swanage, I have seen some incidents develop, but I'm impressed with the efforts of this chap.

Shouldn't the tow be the other way round?

Friday, 22 August 2008

Business as usual

Twice today I was stopped in town asking if we were on strike this weekend!

Can I just confirm that the Industrial Action by our colleagues in the Rescue Co ordination Centres does not involve any Coastguard Rescue Officers.

We all remain on call and will be doing our normal patrols and duties over the weekend.

Members of the public are reminded to continue to dial 999, and ask for Coastguard if persons are seen in trouble or you are in trouble yourself at sea or along the coast.

Tuesday, 19 August 2008

Working together

You can have radios, mobile phones, the best communications in the cant beat a little local liaison between the emergency services.

Monday, 18 August 2008

More pictures

Deputy blog wasnt the only one out with his camera yesterday!

Whilst it is a great opportunity for photo's lets not forget the skill it takes to put the winchman down and also hold a boat in position whilst the helicopter's downdraft is blowing you all over the place.

Thats one cool view, from the door of the aircraft.

Sunday, 17 August 2008

Lifeboat Day - Swanage

RNLI and Coastguard Rescue 106 - Training

In this last one; spot the 'copter!

Saturday, 16 August 2008


Thanks to the deputy blog for looking after the site whilst I was having a few days away.

This years "summer" holiday was Weymouth, a site visit ready for the 2012 Olympics. Good camping site with good views of Portland and the sailing academy

The hanger in the middle of the picture is the Coastguard helicopter hanger at Portland, lots of work going on down there ready for 2012.

Sadly whilst the view was good, yet again the weather was not and with the wind blowing a gale 8 most of the time, we visited RCC Portland on Tuesday night to warm up (Thanks Mark (Big boss of the Operation Room) for allowing us to use the facilities). We packed up camping and went down to my sisters bed and breakfast in Dartmouth.

After a much better nights sleep we headed off to visit the area, and got as far as the new lifeboat station, where we were kindly invited in by Rob Clement the Operations manager for coffee.

Dartmouth lifeboat crew had very similar problems with building their new station as we had with ours(not quite 6 years).

I even got some ideas for lockers for us!

Dartmouth lifeboat have a web site at

Well back home now, ready for Swanage Lifeboat Day tomorrow (Sunday) and to log on to E bay to see if I can get a Coastguard tram for Swanage, that's cool!

Finally only 23 days to start of building!

Thursday, 14 August 2008

Sunny Blackpool!

They do things different up north!

....and no it's not 'photoshopped'!

Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Sunny Swanage?

It's been quiet on the Coastguard front this week, mainly due to the poor weather. It goes without saying that in August we would normally be busy, however the beaches are very empty.

Swanage Beach 16:30

Not particularly good for a town that relies heavily on the tourist trade. I'd like to be able to say the wether will be better this weekend; but sadly not.

For weather updates please click on the logo below.

Monday, 11 August 2008

Training continues

Our Co responding training continues, and we are fast approaching our assessment date. Hopefully by then the bosses will have decided if we can go ahead with the scheme in Swanage, however the training has been excellent and worth doing.

The other night, Terry threw in that little extra that we may come across...emergency child birth, yes what a nightmare for the poor lady involved, lots of pain and then a Coastguard team pull up to help.

Basically we have a special pack that would be used and the point of the training was to go over what was in the pack. As usual there was the lighter side during the training, when the team discussed things that could go wrong.

John is in the "2nd slip" position just in case....and for all those worried mothers out there about to visit the they are not standard gloves!

Saturday, 9 August 2008

What next?

The sad side of having a new building is what will happen to the old building? The home of Swanage Coastguard since 1842, it has seen a fair amount of action and people in and out.

Even if you just count the volunteers that have used the building that's 217 people, and there have been many regular Officers that have used it, if only the building could talk??

So what next for this grand old building......well having spoken to Alan Leeson (Town Clerk) there aren't any plans, just yet. Although the building belongs to the Coastguard, the land its on belongs to the Town Council, so once we vacate, it will be handed back to the Town Council.
The wise step is that Alan wishes us to be safe in the new building first before the council discusses what will happen.

Friday, 8 August 2008


Tonight was a BBQ for some of the team and families. The Station Officer took charge of the BBQ.

Everyone looked happy and was enjoying the food

Gareth thought he would have a go on the trampoline.......

Gareth....are you OK??

Thursday, 7 August 2008

Its a go..............

Today's meeting at the Town Hall, saw people from the MCA, Swanage Town Council, Parsons Brinckerhoff (project consultants) and Farnrise (Construction Company) sit down and discuss the project.

The building work for the new station will start on the 8th September and hopefully be finished by 8th December (subject to contracts and the legal bits)

This is excellent news for the team, and special thanks need to go to all the project team who have been working on this for 4 years!

Wednesday, 6 August 2008

Further Station Update

Tomorrow, we shall be attending a rather important meeting .....log on tomorrow to discover what its all about.

Tuesday, 5 August 2008

Quick Station Update:

Trees coming down Tuesday 26th August........

Old friends

Many of you will remember Dave Ogden who served on the team for a few years. Dave continued to have close links with the team by allowing us to use the Middle school field for helicopter landings when required.

Dave himself turned his skills to his other passion, photography and has regularly had pictures displayed on TV and in the Echo newspaper

Dave kindly sent this picture of the Red Arrows helicopter landing in the school field last week.

To see his other work have a look at his web site

Monday, 4 August 2008

Energy Efficiency

With the price of electricity, gas and petrol going through the roof everyone is looking to be more energy efficient; even Swanage Coastguard.

Note the energy saving techniques deployed here by Tom and Eric. (It was training!)

Sunday, 3 August 2008

On Patrol

You hear all sorts on the radio when out on Patrol!

Portland Coastguard HQ: Southborne Coastguard you are tasked to assist in the recovery of a personal watercraft just south of Hengistbury Head. Mudeford Lifeboat has been launched, over.
Southborne Coastguard: Roger, can you confirm details over?
Portland Coastguard HQ: Be on the look out for a personal watercraft in the form of a black and white jet ski, over.
Southborne Coastguard -Out of breath from running: We are with the informant and can see the jet ski 500m to the south; it looks a funny shape, over.

5 minutes later.

Mudeford Lifeboat: Portland Coastguard we are on scene and can confirm it is a whale, over.
Portland Coastguard HQ: Is it definitely a whale? Is it not a personal watercraft, over.
Mudeford Lifeboat: Affirmative, its both.

Portland Coastguard HQ: It’s been a long day and I’m confused now. Is it a whale or is it a personal watercraft? Over.
Mudeford Lifeboat: We confirm it is a personal watercraft – an inflatable Killer Whale, over.
Portland Coastguard HQ: Please could you pick up the offending inflatable Killer Whale and dispose of it, over.

Mudeford Lifeboat - Laughing: Roger that, we will ‘Free Willy’ on return to station; out.

And the moral of the story? Well there isn’t one other than please be careful when using inflatables when there is an off shore breeze- The Swanage Team have already help rescue one inflatable this week.

Postscript: The very next day! - No seriously!
Portland Coastguard HQ: Mudeford Lifeboat, there is another inflatable killer whale floating off Hengistbury Head, would you please recover, over.

Saturday, 2 August 2008

July Stats

Having finally sat down to do the end of month returns for the boss, this July has been the busiest in terms of the number of hours put in that the team have ever done (to my knowledge).

One incident short of last years July, 16 this year compared to 17 last year, the incidents have been some what more involved and certainley longer. Who would have thought a Coastguard team being sent to a major incident on the ferry road with an over turned bus? As can be seen above our role in this is to assist in landing the helicopters and casualty moving. Already a senior officer of Dorset Police has sent her thanks for the efforts on the day.

The team in July put in a massive 428.5 hours, this includes incidents, care of the equipment, training, accident prevention, PR and admin.

Thank you to all the team for their efforts.

Friday, 1 August 2008

Carnival continues

With carnival events going in the early evenings we sometimes have to stop to eat.

This week we found a new tray holder on the vehicle and well done Nissan for thinking of it!

Now all we need is a couple of cup holders and we are well happy.