The pagers sounded for a fifth time this week when volunteers at Dunbar’s RNLI were called out to assist a surfer in the water near Dunglass, on Saturday afternoon.
The request from the Coastguard to launch the All Weather Lifeboat (ALB) came in at 17:03. A short time later, the boat had left its mooring and was making way to the location.
The surfer was spotted in the water within minutes of arrival and although he did not appear to be in any particular difficulty, was not responding to attempts at communication from the ALB.
The decision was therefore made to launch the ALB’s daughter craft and approach the surfer to check on his welfare.
Once contact had been made it was clear that the surfer was not in any difficulty and happy to continue his paddle up the shore to exit the water at Thorntonloch. Given the onshore wind and the limited swell the Coastguard were happy for the ALB to return to its mooring while monitoring the surfer’s progress up the coast. The crew were further satisfied of the surfer’s safety when he left the water at Thorntonloch beach.
A spokesperson for Dunbar RNLI said, “Although this incident proved to be a false alarm, we greatly appreciate the good intentions and quick reaction of the initial responder. In different weather or other circumstances this could certainly have resulted in a very difficult situation for someone in the water at this location. There is not an easy or safe point to access the shore for a good mile of the coast with cliffs and large rocks making up much of the coastline.” If you ever see someone in the water who you think may be in difficulty, don’t hesitate to call 999 and ask for the Coastguard. You might just help to save a life.
Crew: Martin Dougal, Alan Blair, Alastair Punton, Chris Woods, Andrzej Hajduk, Kieran Fairbairn, Nick Mailer.