Sunday, 28 January 2018

Getting in a tight spot

The team headed down to Durlston today to put into practise the training at the fire tower two weeks ago.

Under the Durlston flats are some large rocks known as rock armour which protect the stabilisation scheme.

There is a risk that people can fall in between the rocks and in this case the team would extract the casualty in a different way to going over the cliff.

The safety brief along with the objectives of the session.

Setting up using nature holdfasts ( the rocks) and locking down the equipment

The frame work is called a quadpod and needs to firmly positioned over the casualty.

The view from below !

And our view down into the tight gap created by the giant rocks.

Saturday, 20 January 2018

Team tasked to person cut off

This morning the team were tasked to the north end of the bay to a person reported cut off by the tide.

The Coastwatch volunteers at Peveril Point spotted the person walking north of Sheps Hollow and were concerned the tide would cut them off.

The Coastguard National Maritime Operation Centre tasked the team to investigate. On arrival at the Ballard Estate the team quickly established the Male was safe and was fishing.

Concerned for a person on the Coast ? 999 Coastguard.

Friday, 19 January 2018

Vertical Rescue

The team headed off to the training tower at Poole Fire Station last night to run through some vertical rope rescue.

Most of our rope rescues involve going over a cliff but there may be times when we need to access a casualty directly from above - such as in rock armour or a blow hole.
This calls for a slightly different technique and the fire station offers a perfect set up with room at the top for observers to see what's going on.

Whilst our rope rescue technicians all took turns at being lowered and operating both main and safety lines, the operators all got to grips with a different 'evac' stretcher used in this type of recovery. Our faithful casualty dummy Ruth Lee was strapped in for a rescue.

Thanks to Poole CG for the loan of the stretcher and of course to our friends at Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue for the use of the tower.

Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Steve is our 'Coastguard of the Year'

We held our annual Presentation Night on Saturday - this is primarily a social evening for the team and their partners, but it's also a good opportunity to review the year just gone, to look through some slides of what we got up to and importantly to present our Coastguard of the Year award.

The Spike Williamson Award is named after a former colleague whose sudden death a few years ago robbed the team of a 'can-do' individual who went the extra mile to support the team both during incidents and outside of them.   Accordingly the award is given to the team member that best demonstrates those qualities and the worthy winner for 2017 is Steve Richards.

This has been Steve's first full year with the team and in that time he has undertaken lots of training to quickly bring himself up to speed, he has attended many incidents, some of them high profile and traumatic, and he has taken our 4x4 vehicle under his wing and continues to look after and care for it.

Well done Steve, very well deserved.

Thanks also to Swanage Royal British Legion for looking after us so well on Saturday.

Sunday, 14 January 2018

Items found on Beach

The pagers sounded for the first tasking of 2018 this morning following the discovery of a number of items on the beach.

The team were tasked to search the shoreline and beach for any further items or perhaps a person in difficulty. The Shannon all-weather lifeboat diverted from its training exercise to do a sweep of the bay and was soon joined by the inshore boat.

After further investigations and a thorough examination of the items which were brought back to the scene by the finder, it was determined that they were unlikely to be linked to someone in difficulty and the teams stood down.

Friday, 12 January 2018

Swanage in numbers

As we move into 2018 , a little look back at the call outs during 2017.

As well as the call outs the volunteers carry out training , patrols and public relations events.

So in total 107 incidents were recorded.

1 unexploded piece of ordnance

2 animal rescues

21 Marine incidents involving craft or swimmers

2 pollution incidents

9 rope rescues

21 medical incidents

20 searches for lost persons

14 investigates

17 miscellaneous incidents

Sunday, 7 January 2018

Multi-Agency Search Exercise

You may have seen some of the team on the local news this week taking part in a recent exercise to test the multi-agency response to finding missing people in Dorset.

Last month, selected team members joined specially trained officers from Dorset Police and colleagues from neighbouring Coastguard teams, RNLI, Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue, Dorset Search and Rescue, Hampshire Search and Rescue Dogs, Dorset Search Dogs and the Royal Life Saving Society as well as the NPAS helicopter.

The first live scenario they encountered involved three missing people, including a 10-year-old boy, and a second scenario involved a vulnerable man who had been reported missing.

The exercise was based at Brownsea Island and the services worked together to plan and co-ordinate the searches and locate the missing people.

Each year we get involved in a number of searches for missing persons, and exercises such as this not only allow us  to train alongside the partner agencies we would work with,  but it also allows us to adopt a common, joined up approach to search planning and search management.

Superintendent Mike Rogers, of Dorset Police, said: “Exercises such as this are a valuable way of testing the response of the various agencies involved to major incidents, the roles they each play and how they work together in such scenarios.

“They help us test our plans and resilience and ensure that our staff are up-to-date with the latest practice.

“I would like to thank all the personnel from the various agencies and organisations who contributed to the exercise as well as the National Trust for its permission and support to run the event on Brownsea Island.”

Friday, 5 January 2018

Flooding Expected

The Environment Agency have issued the following :

Swanage Bay
Flooding is expected - immediate action required

The following flood warning will remain in force two hours either side of the following high tides: 05/01/2018 at 11.45 pm, 06/01/2018 at 11.45 am, 07/01/2018 at 00.02am,
07/01/2018 at 11.40am
08/01/2018 at 00.40am.

Strong North Easterly winds may cause overtopping of the sea wall potentially flooding roads and depositing shingle. People are advised to stay aware from risk areas and take care near to the coast.

This information was last updated at 2:59pm Friday 5 January 2018

Tuesday, 2 January 2018

Eleanor is on the way - Yellow Warning

Between 18:00 Tue 2nd and 18:00 Wed 3rd

Storm Eleanor to bring very strong winds later Tuesday, continuing overnight and on Wednesday. The warning has been adjusted to bring the northern boundary southwards, and to combine with the warning previously in force for Wednesday. Public transport may be disrupted or canceled and some bridges are likely to be closed. Power cuts and disruption to other services (mobile phones for example) may also occur, while injuries from flying debris are possible. Combined with a period of high tides, it is likely that some western coastal communities will be affected by large waves and spray, and again there is a chance that injuries and danger to life could occur from large waves, or beach material being thrown on to seafronts and coastal properties.
Further details

Monday, 1 January 2018

Don’t slip in 2018

Happy New Year to all those who read the blog.

I’m sure many of you have noticed the rain in the last week and this is just starting to make paths and tracks a little waterlogged.

We have been informed the coastal path from Dancing Ledge to Anvil Point is particularly slippery so we urge some caution if you are out walking.

Our colleagues in St Albans have also issued a warning for the area around St Albans Head.

Please may sure you take the right clothing and footwear if going for a walk along the Coast.

Coastal Emergency ?
999 Coastguard