TV show rescue all in a mayday’s work for Dunbar lifeboat

A still taken from the crew's helmet camera showing the Seacliff rescue
A still taken from the crew's helmet camera showing the Seacliff rescue
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THEIR tales of derring-do on the high seas are usually aired in the boat house – or public house – after they finish a gruelling shift.

But now the heroic deeds of the Dunbar RNLI crew have been captured on film and are set to hit screens across the UK later this month.

New series Mayday, Mayday charts the life- saving adventures and day-to-day challenges faced by RNLI volunteers across Britain.

Dramatic footage obtained from the crews’ helmet-cams and on-board cameras shows the courage displayed by rescuers as they tackle emergency operations. Viewers can watch the action unfold from the perspective of the RNLI teams via the helmet-cam technology.

The programme starring Dunbar RNLI crewmen is being screened on STV on Thursday, September 20, and features a rescue in which five people were stranded on rocks near North Berwick.

The stricken party, which included three children, had been trapped at Seacliff by the rising tide and had to call the Coastguard to alert them to the danger.

Thanks to the bravery of the Dunbar RNLI team, who scooped them up in their inshore lifeboat, the Jimmy Miff, no-one was injured in the rescue. Gary Fairbairn, Dunbar’s RNLI coxswain, said the helmet camera had become a useful tool for the station and was worn by one of the crew during every call-out.

He also called it an “immense training tool” which could also play a role in generating positive PR for the organisation.

He added: “This rescue may not have been the most dramatic service we have carried out but it nicely demonstrates the skill levels our crews need to achieve to operate effectively in all conditions.

“Overall, the series should give a good feel for the work of the RNLI and illustrate the wide range of jobs we get called out to do.”

An ITV spokesperson said: “The series aims to highlight the work of the RNLI volunteers and hopefully will lead to even more men and women getting involved in this valuable work, and increased public support for what they do.

“Dunbar’s RNLI lifeboat station has recently been equipped with a state-of-the-art helmet camera to allow footage of their work to be gathered.”

Also appearing in the programme, which begins at 7.30pm, are two rescues from the south of England – one a couple taken off their sinking yacht along with their dog, the other a man with serious head injuries after a coastal fall.

david.mccann@edinburghnews.com