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The Arran Coastguard Rescue Team have seen another busy year season with 160 call outs so far in 2019.
The majority of the calls were to attend, secure and when necessary light the landing site for the air ambulance to land at Sandbraes in Whiting Bay, but the rest of the calls, more than 50, have been to a variety of other incidents.
These have included attending injured walkers on the coastal path, reports of persons in the water, concerns for the welfare of people, responding to reports of a variety of vessels in distress – from large container ships to small dinghies – unidentified objects in the sea, items of suspected ordnance and marine pyrotechnics on the shore and assisting other emergency services.
The Arran Coastguard worked alongside Arran MRT, RAF and Police MRT, Arran and Campbeltown RNLI, Scottish Ambulance Service, local police and the Royal Navy. Commenting on the co-operation between organisations a spokeswoman on their social media page said: ‘We may represent different organisations but we share the same aim – to help people in difficulty and to keep people safe.’
In addition to the call-outs the team have also been kept busy with training and certification. In September members underwent their three yearly Water Rescue Re-evaluation which ensures that all members are capable and up to date with their skills. This involves being evaluated on their competence in a variety of skills from bankside safety systems designed to allow them to safely approach the edges of piers and riverbanks, to throwline drills and rescue swimming to extraction of casualties from the water.
The Arran Coastguard team will be recruiting in the spring and vacancies will be advertised through a variety of media sources. Further information about volunteering can be found on the website at www.gov.uk/guidance/volunteering-for-mca