£1m training fund helps Newlyn RNLI lifesaver Andrew learn vital skills

Trainee helmsman Andrew Wood. Image: RNLI/Amy Smith.

Wednesday 11th July 2018 00:06 BST

A recently recruited volunteer crew member at Penlee RNLI lifeboat station has had a vital part of their crew training funded by Lloyd’s Register Foundation.

Andrew Wood, 45, from Newlyn, recently travelled to the RNLI College in Poole, Dorset, to complete the charity’s Crew Emergency Procedures course.

Andrew was inspired to join up as a volunteer crew member because after spending many years working and cruising at sea, and having once been rescued himself after dismasting during the Fastnet Race, Andrew felt that it was a way he could contribute a little back to such an important life saving service and help others.

The course sees volunteer crew being trained in a variety of crucial subjects such as how to ‘abandon ship’ with a 4m jump into water, team survival swimming, coping in a life raft in simulated darkness, how to right a capsized inshore lifeboat, and the importance of lifejackets. It also covers emergency fire theory such as how to deal with fires aboard lifeboats, and practical sessions on the correct use of flares, fire extinguishers and throw bags.

Training took place in the Sea Survival Centre at the charity’s college, which includes a 25m wave-generating survival tank, allowing trainees to experience first-hand some of the scenarios they may encounter at sea should they ever need to abandon their lifeboat.

The training was funded by Lloyd’s Register Foundation, a charitable foundation that helps to protect life and property by supporting engineering-related education, public engagement and the application of research. The Foundation is committed to funding the RNLI’s Crew Emergency Procedures course for a second 5-year period until December 2020. This additional funding of £1.06m will bring their total support for RNLI crew training to just over £2.46m.

Talking about the training, Andrew, who volunteers as a crewman on the Inshore and all-weather lifeboat said: “The incredible facilities and the high level of training at the RNLI Sea Survival Centre were very valuable to me as a trainee helm, it helped inspire me with confidence in our personal survival and rescue equipment.”

Lifesaving delivery training manager at the RNLI David Knaggs said, ‘We are so grateful to Lloyd’s Register Foundation for choosing to fund this vital part of our volunteer crews’ training.

Their support is hugely important to us, and it’s fantastic how many of our crew have so far been able to benefit from Lloyd’s Register Foundation’s support of their training. This training is crucial in helping keep our volunteers as safe as possible whilst carrying out rescues. It gives volunteers the confidence to save lives even in the most difficult conditions.’

This donation is the latest in Lloyd’s Register Foundation’s relationship with the RNLI, which was recognised in 2010 when it received the Group Supporter Award from HRH Prince Michael of Kent in recognition of its valuable support of the charity.

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