South West Wales

Kayakers rescued from rocks by Mumbles lifeboat

A "disaster" was averted by a quick thinking walker when three kayakers were stranded on rocks in rough conditions.

The kayakers were rescued by a lifeboat crew in Gower, Swansea, after getting into difficulty in rough seas, strong winds and poor visibility.

An RAF Sea King helicopter re-routed from Devon also assisted in the rescue.

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) has warned people to be prepared if going into the sea.

A helicopter from RAF Chivenor in north Devon and the Mumbles lifeboat were deployed following a call from a walker on the cliff path at 1630 BST on Wednesday.

Mumbles RNLI lifeboat operations manager Tim Conway said: "The weather wasn't the best for a pleasurable trip to sea for these people and one of the kayaks wasn't capable of being safe in what was quite rough weather.

"It was down to sheer luck and the quick thinking of the public that this didn't turn out to be a disaster."

Best practise

By the time the lifeboat arrived, the kayakers had scrambled onto rocks under the observation of the helicopter.

The lifeboat escorted them back to shore, where they were met by Swansea Coastguard and given some tips in best practise before setting out.

"We would urge anyone taking to the sea in any conditions to check the weather forecast, have some means of communicating with shore if in distress and always let someone know where you are going and when you intend to return," added Mr Conway.

"In this case it might have been worth checking to see the vessel they were going to sea in was really suitable for the task in hand."

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