The Selsey lifeboat crews tackled rough seas to come to the rescue of up to six kayakers who had got into difficulty paddling to Littlehampton yesterday.
The D class inshore lifeboat (ILB) Betty and Thomas Moore was launched at 1.03pm on Saturday, October 7, at the request of UK Coastguards after they received reports of a kayaker struggling to make way approximately half a mile south of Pagham harbour, Selsey RNLI said.
The volunteer crew of three were on scene at 1.08pm and started to search for the kayaker, but in moderate to rough seas, they could not find anything in their search so a request was made for Selsey's all-weather lifeboat (ALB) be launched to assist.
The Shannon class Denise and Eric lifeboat launched at 1.28pm and made best speed to the search area, arriving on scene at 1.34pm.
At 1.43pm the ILB found the kayaker and recovered him to the boat.
A Selsey RNLI spokesman said: "He was wet and cold and said he was with six other kayaks that were all heading from Selsey to Littlehampton.
"The kayaker and kayak were transferred to the ALB and both boats headed east towards Littlehampton to make sure the other kayaks all arrived safely.
"Unfortunately they weren’t all together which made locating them difficult."
At 2.25pm the Littlehampton lifeboat B891 Renee Sherman launched to assist, allowing the Selsey ILB to be released to return to station.
"The ALB entered Littlehampton harbour at 2.40pm to hand the rescued kayaker to the Littlehampton coastguards while B891 continued gathering up the remaining kayaks," the spokesman said.
"At 3.08pm all the kayaks were accounted for and the lifeboats were released to return to station."
The Selsey ILB returned to station at 3.12pm and the ALB returned at 4.00pm.
The crews were ALB: Coxswain Rob Archibald, 2nd Cox Dave Lamdin, Mechanic Gary Pearce, Craig Sergeant, Carol Tipping and Steve Somner. ILB: Helmsman James Albrey, Andy Lee and Harry Emmence.
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