Chiswick Lifeboat Rescue Capsized Sculler

After crew members spot woman in water from station's balcony

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The crew of Chiswick’s RNLI lifeboat station launched on Saturday 10th April to aid a sculler whose boat had capsized in the River Thames.

The three crew members on shift – Andy Mayo, Rob Archibald, and Neil Robertson – were monitoring the river from the balcony of the station in Corney Reach Way, when they noticed three single rowers, one of whom had capsized.

The lifeboat was launched and the rower, who had taken to the river with two friends in separate sculls at Hammersmith, plucked from the water along with her scull, before being landed to safety.

Lifeboat helmsman Andy Mayo said, "We noticed the three people and saw that one was in the water, so we notified the coastguard and launched to their assistance. We recovered the female into the boat then recovered the scull, and dropped her back at the Sons of the Thames pontoon at Chiswick

"Whilst not in any immediate danger, the rower was glad to see us and said she was just beginning to panic about the possibility of the tide sweeping her under the houseboats by the causeway. That’s the thing about the Thames – a seemingly harmless appearance can often hide very strong tides and currents, so we treat every casualty as potentially dangerous.

"Fortunately, the rower was not in the water that long so she wasn’t cold and hadn’t swallowed any water – she was just happy to be safe back on the pontoon."

Chiswick RNLI lifeboat station is one of four which covers the tidal reaches of the River Thames.

The RNLI remains a charity which relies on voluntary contributions and seeks no Government funding to provide its search and rescue service.

April 13, 2010