Whitby Coastguard issues warning over inflatable boats

Coastguards made a thorough search of the area. PIC: Coastguard
Coastguards made a thorough search of the area. PIC: Coastguard

Whitby Coastguard have warned against inflatable boats in the sea in offshore winds after they were called to five youths in a dinghy yesterday.

On Sunday evening at 6pm, Whitby Coastguard Team were called by Humber Coastguard operations centre in response to a member of the public reporting concern for a small inflatable dingy at sea below Whitby Abbey.

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Coastguards began a search of the area between the East Pier and Saltwick Nab, where five youths were found to be coming ashore with a small inflatable dingy.

Despite the offshore wind, they had managed to get back to shore and said they hadn't bee in any difficulty.

Coastguards confirmed that they were safe and well and offered safety advice.

The Coastguard said: "On this occasion all has ended well, however, we strongly recommend that blow up boats are not used in an offshore wind – that is when the wind blows from the land out to sea – because they can quickly be swept out to sea.

"Go to a lifeguarded beach if possible and heed the lifeguards’ advice. If people do find themselves being swept out to sea, our advice is to stay with the boat and shout for help, waving arms if possible.

"Do not attempt to swim for shore if out of depth. Ideally make sure that someone ashore is keeping an eye on you.

"If you suspect someone is in trouble, knowing which service to call and doing so early saves lives. We would always rather be called out to check that all is well.

"Remember if you or someone you see is in trouble on the sea, shore or cliffs around our coastline call 999 ask for the coastguard."