Sunny weather and the revamped Redcar seafront helped ensure the town’s lifeboat station had its busiest summer since records began.
As reported, Redcar’s two lifeboats launched 45 times during June, July and August - nearly twice the 24 launches of the same period last year, and putting the station joint second busiest in the north.
The figures mean it was Redcar Lifeboat Station’s busiest three month period since the town got its own lifeboat back in 1802.
Dave Cammish, Redcar RNLI lifeboat operations manager, said: “It’s been a hectic summer period for the volunteer crew members at Redcar and I can’t praise them enough for their commitment."July was particularly busy for us.
"There were countless times where the crew had to leave their families to enjoy the sunny weather and rush off to help people who got into difficulties on or in the sea.
"Over one weekend alone we launched five times, dealing with everything from people cut off by the tide to children being blown out to sea in a toy inflatable.”
The station’s deputy launching authority Dave Cocks, said good weather - and the number of people flocking to Redcar seafront to see new attractions like the Redcar Beacon - meant more call-outs for the lifeboat crews.
He said: “We’ve never had a busier period since we got lifeboats at Redcar. We had a lot more incidents generally because of the good weather and the beach was often packed with people coming to Redcar.
“Tragically, we had two fatalities - a man who fell off cliffs in June and a diver who died in July - and we had a collision between two fishing boats.
“We also had more of the other, more routine incidents - jetskis, inflatables and, of course, lots of people getting cut off by the tide at Huntcliff.
"We had 10 of those in August alone.”
Mr Cocks urged people to check tide times before walking beneath Huntcliff and give themselves at least three hours before high tide.
He also encouraged people to support the RNLI, saying: “These launches and rescues don’t come free. Each lifeboat launch has a cost and as a charity, we are always looking for support.”
RNLI crews in the north of England carried out 598 rescue launches – 28.9% up on last year, with only 2003 (632 launches) and 2009 (634) busier.
RNLI lifeguards also experienced a busy season in the north, dealing with 1,408 incidents compared to 1,143 last summer – a 23.2% increase.
Article from Gazette Live