When a group of adults and children found themselves waist deep in water in Leasowe Bay on Wednesday 10 August, a rescue effort between Hoylake RNLI and the coastguard was launched.
The group of four adults and two children had been cut off by the rapidly flooding tide near Leasowe Lighthouse. They were spotted by the Wirral Coastguard Rescue Team attempting to cross a deep gutter to reach the nearby sea wall but had found themselves in difficulty.
The alarm was raised and Hoylake RNLI hovercraft was requested to launch just after 8.00pm. The hovercraft Hurley Spirit and her volunteer crew quickly arrived on scene and pulled the casualties from the water.
Fortunately, they were all okay and required no medical attention, so the hovercraft flew the group back towards Meols and passed them ashore safely to Coastguard officers. With nobody else in difficulty, the hovercraft stood down and returned to the lifeboat station.
The incident follows another rescue by the RNLI hovercraft the previous evening when two young people had also been cut off by the flooding tide in the same location.
Hoylake RNLI volunteer hovercraft commander James Whiteley said, “The incidents this week highlight the real dangers around our coast, where fast flooding tides can quickly catch people out and cut them off from the shore. We hope everyone can enjoy a beach visit safely but with more hot weather and big tides on the way, we urge everyone to check and understand tide times and heights. If you’re heading out, know your route to safety and always carry a means of calling for help.
“Try and avoid entering the water and dial 999 for the Coastguard in an emergency. If you find yourself in difficulty in the water, don’t panic and float to live – stay calm, lean back and extend your arms and legs, and float until you can swim to safety or call for help.”
James added: “The sea defences on the north Wirral shore are currently undergoing repairs and upgrades, so we would advise anyone visiting areas like Leasowe Beach to be particularly cautious of new hazards like deeper waters and submerged rock armour.”
Image: The rescue was captured from the air by parasailor, Chris Guy, who witnessed the hovercraft heading to Leasowe Bay