Sunderland RNLI lifeboat volunteer Jonny Lindsley (Credit RNLI/Paul Nicholson)
Author: Paul Nicholson, Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer
An emergency call out last week for Sunderland RNLI proved to be a landmark mission for its volunteer Jonny Lindsley after he formed part of the boat crew onboard the stations Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat for the first time during a real rescue mission.
Jonny, 22 from High Barnes, Sunderland is employed as a delivery driver for ‘The Sandwich Company’ and has been part of the lifeboat stations operational crew since late 2010 when he enrolled as a member of the shore crew; responsible for helping to launch and recover the lifeboats.
Last month Jonny was selected to move from the shore crew to the boat crew to replace volunteer Chris Lees who is standing down from the boat crew but remaining at the station as an inshore lifeboat mechanic.
After successfully passing the charities required medical, Jonny then had to complete a number of initial safety critical assessments before being allowed to go to sea onboard the lifeboats.
Shortly after 6:30pm on Thursday (24 May) evening Humber Coastguard requested the launch of the stations 2 inshore lifeboats after they received a 999 call from a member of the public concerned that they had lost sight of a sea swimmer off Seaburn beach.
After carrying out a complete search of the coast-line up to half a mile offshore, the Coastguard were happy that there was no one missing in the area. Investigations on the shore also confirmed that no one was missing.
After the rescue mission Jonny said: ‘It was great to get the opportunity to put the skills I have learnt over the last few months into practice for real. The training I have received so far has given me the confidence to work alongside other crewmembers and start to learn some of the more advanced skills required to become a fully fledged member of the lifeboat crew.’
During the initial twelve month period Jonny will carry out a number of training scenarios and assessments as well as attending formal training courses both locally and at the charities training centre in Poole, Dorset.
All of the training costs for Sunderland RNLI lifeboat station during 2012 are being offset by a £15,000 donation from North of England P&I Association.
North of England P&I Association is a marine mutual liability insurer, providing protection and indemnity, war risks and defence cover to 6,000 ships worldwide, equating to 150 million gross tonnes.
The head office is based in Newcastle upon Tyne with regional offices in the major shipping hubs of Hong Kong, Japan, Piraeus and Singapore. North celebrated its 150th Anniversary in 2010 and its history is linked with the traditions of Newcastle upon Tyne as a major shipping centre.