Cramond Island stranding: RNLI urges people to ‘check the tide times’ for the Firth of Forth island after 19 people stranded

RNLI are urging travellers heading to Cramond Island in the Forth near Edinburgh to check the tide times as the rescue service face 19 incidents of stranding.

Friday, 26th March 2021, 7:54 am
Updated Friday, 26th March 2021, 3:37 pm

Last week alone, RNLI crews had to rescue 19 people after they were left stranded on the island which lies off the foreshore at Cramond.

Michael Avril, RNLI Scotland Regional Safety lead told BBC Good Morning Scotland today that stranding on Cramond Island is a ‘big problem’ the rescue service has faced over the last ten years, however, last week was ‘particularly bad.’

"Over those five week days, we had a shout each day to the island where people were getting cut off.” said Mr Avril.

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The RNLI urges Cramond Island visitors to check tide times as stranding on the Firth of Forth island increases (Photo: RNLI).

Mr Avril commented that people need to be aware of how drastically the tide can change on the island.

He said: "The concern we’ve got is that although it’s very safe at low tide, as soon as that water starts to come in, then there’s problems with people being cut off by the tide and unfortunately they are stuck on the island and they are calling for help."

Cramond walk has ‘not always’ been ‘clearly signposted’, Mr Avril told the BBC programme, but the RNLI has spent ‘a lot of time and effort’ with Edinburgh local authority and other partners over the last five years to put signage in place to help.

Commenting on the signage, Mr Avril said: “Overall, that has been making a difference but unfortunately people are still making mistakes and we’d just like to remind them that the tide does come in and please check safe crossing times.”

There are also fears the stranding problem could get worse during summer as staycationing in Scotland is due to come underway through the loosening of restrictions.

The RNLI is asking potential visitors to follow Scottish Government advice and not to put themselves, their friends, family and emergency services at risk by taking chances.

"There is plenty of opportunities for people to find out how to visit Cramond safely so what we are recommending is that they check the safe crossing times.” said Mr Avril.

Signage will be available at the start of the walk itself at Cramond foreshore, where there is some safe crossing times in paper format inside the signs.

People can also text the word ‘Cramond’ to 81400 to access the safe crossing times for the day.

Planning ahead, visitors can also check out the RNLI Queensferry Lifeboat station site where all of the safe crossing times are there for the year ahead.

If people do get stranded, the RNLI is asking them to call 999 and ask for the coast guard as soon as they think they are in trouble.

They are asking people not to try and make their own way back when the tides come in due to the danger of falling into the deeper water.

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