Peterhead RNLI lifeboat crew rescues swimmer from Boddam Harbour

Wild swimmers are being urged to follow safety advice following a dramatic rescue by a Peterhead lifeboat crew.

By Kevin McRoberts
Friday, 13th August 2021, 8:30 am
Updated Friday, 13th August 2021, 9:22 am
The Misses Robertson of Kintail was launched to rescue the swimmer at Boddam Harbour. (Photo: Craig Meheut)
The Misses Robertson of Kintail was launched to rescue the swimmer at Boddam Harbour. (Photo: Craig Meheut)

Aberdeen Coastguard requested the immediate launch of RNLI Peterhead’s lifeboat after receiving a 999 call reporting a swimmer in difficulty in Boddam Harbour on Wednesday (August 11).

The Misses Robertson of Kintail sped to Boddam Harbour, a mile south of Peterhead. On arrival the RNLI volunteer crew met the UK Coastguard team already in the water, trying to keep the swimmer afloat. The swimmer was recovered to the lifeboat using the onboard slings and ‘A’ Frame and returned to Peterhead for treatment.

Duty Coxswain Pat Davidson said, "This was one of the few time-critical shouts you get as a lifeboat crew when you know there's a person in the water in difficulty. It's an awful feeling, and you do everything in your power to get there as fast as possible.

"As soon as we arrived, we could see the local coastguard rescue team had entered the water to try to keep the casualty afloat. Due to the precarious position the casualty was in, the only means of recovery was the lifeboat. Between the coastguard team and the lifeboat crew, the swimmer was placed into our recovery slings and hoisted on board and placed in the care of the casualty care team before returning to an awaiting ambulance at Peterhead Harbour.

"There is no doubt in my mind that without the bystander dialling 999 and the quick response from the coastguard and volunteer lifeboat crew, this would have been a different outcome. My crew mates and the coastguard should be very proud of what they achieved. Fantastic multi-agency service from police, ambulance, Coastguard and RNLI lifeboat crew.

Sandy Garvock, one of Peterhead's newest recruits, added: "This was a great example of how we all work as a team. Time was against us but thankfully we arrived on time to rescue the swimmer. It shows how quickly a situation can change in the water and why we must be careful.”

• RNLI safety advice for wild swimming: plan ahead – check the weather and tide times; let someone know where you will be going and when you will be back; always swim parallel to the shore; and consider wearing a wetsuit – Scotland's sea temperatures remain cold throughout the year.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​