Petit Bot kayakers in difficulty helped to safety

EMERGENCY services dealt with three significant search and rescue incidents on Saturday.

The Spirit of Guernsey stands by as five kayakers who got into difficulties in Petit Bot on Saturday afternoon are helped by the crew of the inshore lifeboat. The incident also involved St John, police and coastguard. The swell was too big to land them on the beach so they were taken to St Peter Port on the Spirit. (Picture supplied by St John Emergency Ambulance)
The Spirit of Guernsey stands by as five kayakers who got into difficulties in Petit Bot on Saturday afternoon are helped by the crew of the inshore lifeboat. The incident also involved St John, police and coastguard. The swell was too big to land them on the beach so they were taken to St Peter Port on the Spirit. (Picture supplied by St John Emergency Ambulance)

At 11.48am, the Joint Emergency Services Control Centre received a 999 call from kayakers in trouble in the Petit Bot area.

This resulted in a multi-agency response from Guernsey Coastguard, Guernsey Police, St John Ambulance Service and both, the St Peter Port all-weather lifeboat, Spirit of Guernsey, and the inshore lifeboat, Elizabeth & Margaret Milligan.

The inshore lifeboat arrived on scene at 12.11pm closely followed by Spirit of Guernsey.

A medical assessment was made of the kayakers, who had been in the water for some time.

Because of the serious condition of one of the casualties it was decided to attempt to land them ashore at Petit Bot where ambulance and police were waiting, but due to a large swell in the bay this was not possible.

The decision was made to transfer the casualties to the Spirit of Guernsey for transportation back to St Peter Port.

Both lifeboats arrived back into St Peter Port at 12.42pm where all casualties were handed over to a waiting ambulance there.

At 6.21pm, Guernsey Coastguard received a call from the crew of a Rib that had suffered mechanical failure and was in need of assistance approximately four nautical miles north of Platte Fougere on Guernsey’s north coast.

At 6.25pm, a Pan-Pan broadcast was made and the motor vessel Laura Jane offered assistance and proceeded to the scene.

At 6.34pm, the Spirit of Guernsey was mobilised to go to the aid of the stricken Rib.

The Laura Jane arrived on scene at 6.56pm and established a tow with the Rib which was handed over to the Spirit of Guernsey at 7.12pm.

The lifeboat and the casualty vessel got back to St Peter Port at 7.36pm where the tow was handed over to Guernsey Harbour staff.

At 7pn, while this incident was being dealt with, another vessel approximately half a nautical mile north-west of the Lower Heads buoy called Guernsey Coastguard to declare an engine failure and asked for assistance.

Another vessel, Grafter, responded to the casualty’s call and arrived on scene 7.26pm.

A tow was established and both boats arrived safely back into St Peter Port 20 minutes later.

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