Sunday, May 27, 2012

Rescue Me

Walking the dog this evening was interrupted by a 999 call to the Coastguard, when I spotted two occupants of a jet ski in difficulties between Westbrook and St Mildred's Bay.

I don't like calling 999 for anything less than a real emergency but these two gentlemen clearly weren't sailors and were clearly having problems. "Where are you from?" I called out. "Lithuania," replied the driver. "It's over there," I said, pointing expansively in the general direction of north-eastern Europe.

The two of them were sitting on what I could only describe as a rather 'clapped-out-looking' jet ski, which was defying all attempts to start it.

Anyway, they finally drifted-in close to the sea wall, where the driver risked several attempts at 'braining' his passenger, against my advice, by trying to throw the heavy sea anchor up at the promenade railings. He eventually succeeded and I secured the anchor and then used the thin line to pull himself up and out of the sea, cutting his arm on the way.

Rather than wait for the inshore life-boat and the Coastguard vehicle, which I told him were coming, he then proceeded of on foot, towards Herne Bay and I had to reassure the inshore lifeboat team and Coastguard 4*4 when they arrived that he wasn't actually lost at sea but was walking-off to find his car and trailer. They went-off in pursuit by car to make sure he was OK.

All credit to the Coastguard for their quick response but this does, once again illustrate what I've said before about jet skis  in general and some irresponsible operators presenting an increasing hazard to themselves and others along the coast and if you look back on this weblog, then I think you will find another photo of a jet ski being rescued at the identical spot.

You can see from my photos that the passenger was reluctant to have his photo taken.


Tony2 said...

This is the part of the coast where someone in authority decided to remove the escape ladder some years ago. This left no escape from the beach and sea between Westbrook lower Prom car park and St Mildred s bay. If the sea had been less calm this situation could have been worse.
There is also a danger of walkers being cut off by the tide at this point again with no escape

Afghan Dave said...

One of them flees the scene and another doesn't want his photo taken. Smuggling attempt?