On Monday 23 January the spring tides were some of the highest that the fishing village of Clovelly had seen all year. But that didn’t stop volunteers from the RNLI from rushing to the assistance of a man and his dog, who found themselves stranded near Mouth Mill on the North Devon coast.
At 5pm the volunteer crew launched the Atlantic class inshore lifeboat Toby Rundle from Clovelly Lifeboat Station, soon locating the casualty, who had been cut off by the tide. Crew member Casie Harper went ashore to assess the situation and it was established that the man and dog could not be evacuated by boat.
At this point a Coastguard helicopter was dispatched from Newquay and the man his dog were successfully evacuated by air. Having stayed with the casualty, Harper was also winched into the helicopter and returned to the station by land.
Crew member Paul Smale said, “We often get called out to assist people who have been caught out by the tide coming in. During the spring tides especially, the water can get very high very quickly, and it’s easy for even experienced walkers to get cut off. Thankfully, we were able to assist the Coastguard in evacuating the casualty and his dog.”
Paul and the rest of the RNLI Clovelly crew strongly advise anyone heading off on a coastal walk to check the local tide times before venturing out. He said;
“Always make sure you leave yourself enough time to reach your destination safely, as it’s easy to become trapped once the tide starts coming in.”