News : Walking to Blackpool - again
At 6.30pm Tuesday night (16th August), Southport Lifeboat received an emergency pager alert from Liverpool Coastguard after they had received a distressing mobile phone call from two walkers stranded and lost in mud trying to make their way to Blackpool.
The two quads were tasked to carry out an immediate search of the area following the route taken by the walkers direct from the end of Southport Pier towards Blackpool Tower. Also tasked was the RNLI Lytham inshore rescue boat which searched the numerous channels in the area, they also were able to put crew members ashore to search on foot.
During the search, one of Southport Lifeboat’s quads became stuck in the mud and had to be abandoned. The search continued on foot and the casualties were eventually found by the quad crew between knee and waist deep in mud within a gully at the end of the Penfold Channel approx 2½ out from the causeway at the old sand-winning plant on the Coastal Road commonly known as Rainford’s Track. The Southport Lifeboat quad crew were met by three local fisherman who were able to offer assistance with the casualties.
The casualties were then escorted back towards the shore by one of the fishermen where they were met by the team from the Southport Coastguard Rescue Service in their response vehicle Southport Mobile. They were then taken straight back to the Southport Lifeboat House where they were met by a waiting ambulance crew to make sure that they were not suffering from after-effects of their ordeal. They were later taken to Southport Railway station in order to make their way back to Manchester.
Upon the successful recovery of the two casualties, attention was then given to releasing the stuck quad from the mud. This was done with help of the two remaining fishermen by using equipment carried on the quads for such emergencies such as a compact winch, folding spades, a ground anchor and towing straps.
When the two quads eventually arrived back at the boathouse, they had to be washed off thoroughly before being placed back on station ready for the next call-out. The crew finally left the boathouse at 10.30pm, four hours after the initial alert.