Weston’s volunteer Lifeboat crew were paged by Milford Haven Coastguard at 20.53 on Thursday evening.
Weston Lifeboat crew were requested to launch to a group of youths who had been cut off by the tide on Birnbeck Island. With low water just past and the tide coming back in very rapidly the Lifeboat crew made their way around to the low water launch area.
The Avon & Somerset Police, Avon Fire Rescue and local coastguard teams gathered in the car park at the landward end of Birnbeck Island Pier in case the youths may have become trapped while exploring the unsafe “Old Pier”.
With D class lifeboat just entering the water, the crew spotted the 2 people wading back across the shingle bank to the shore with the tide rapidly rising to chest height. Before the Lifeboat could enter the water the 2 youths scrambled their way back to the shore to the awaiting coastguard team. The Lifeboat crew then noticed that four more youths walking along the pier’s unsafe walkway back to the shore. The crew had to leave the old boathouse on Birnbeck 3 years ago because the same walkway had been deemed too unsafe & dangerous for the Weston Lifeboat volunteers to use.
the crew waited to see all the youths make it back the shore to be met by the police and coastguard. The crew made the journey back through the mud to the station to begin a long clean down of themselves and the launching vehicle.
Once the 6 male youths had been checked that no one had been injured while the they had been on the unsafe island, the police questioned them to find out why they had put their lives in danger. Shockingly the reply was, trying to catch Pokémon.
Chris Lyons, RNLI Crew member said ‘it is great to see people getting out and about enjoying themselves however, putting your life in danger trying to catch Pokémon is extremely irresponsible. In Weston the tide comes in so quickly in seconds you can be in life threating danger. I would like to say please if you do see a Pokémon either on the rocks or in the muddy areas of Weston bay, don’t put yourself into a position where you could become stuck. The water is unforgiving, it doesn’t give you a second chance whereas a game will.’
RNLI notes to editors
For further information, please contact Chris Lyons Deputy RNLI Lifeboat Press Officer on 07825 347697 or Weston-super-Mare RNLI Lifeboat Press Officer Glyn Hayes on 01934 824587
Lifeboats in service at Weston-super-Mare
Atlantic 75 class Lifeboat named Coventry and Warwickshire
D-Class Lifeboat named Anna Stock
The station was established in 1882 at the request of the local inhabitants and moved into its current boathouse in 1902. In 2013 we had to leave our lifeboat station on Birnbeck Island as the access pier had become too dangerous. The temporary station at Knightstone is until we can get a new station built.
To find out more information about Weston-super-Mare lifeboat and for recent events, please log onto our website or contact Glyn Hayes on 01934 824587.
For more information on the RNLI please visit www.rnli.org.uk. News releases and other media resources, including RSS feeds, downloadable photos and video, are available at the RNLI Press Centre www.rnli.org.uk/press
Key facts about the RNLI
The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 230 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and has more than 100 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 137,000 lives.
A charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SCO37736). Charity number CHY 2678 in the Republic of Ireland