Lifeboat stations in Cornwall have had a busy summer
Falmouth shares joint first position as the busiest lifeboat station in the South West this summer.
RNLI lifeboat crews in the south west have collectively launched 653 times, a slight rise on last year’s total of 627.
The south west has seen a slight rise of 26 emergency call outs and the unseasonable weather has led to some extremely difficult rescues.
The busiest stations in the south west were Poole in Dorset and Falmouth in Cornwall, each with 45 call outs, followed by Plymouth in Devon with 39 emergency launches and St Helier, Jersey with 33 call outs.
Penlee station was called out 24 times and Newquay 23 times.
Tom Mansell, RNLI Inspector in the south west, said "This has been an unusual summer with some tricky weather for our volunteer lifeboat crews to contend with.
"The recent rescue of a surfer in southerly force five to six winds and with a choppy two to three metre swell and larger breaking waves by the crew of the Salcombe inshore lifeboat showed just how much we expect from our volunteers, as did the rescue of a yachtsman thrown into the water when the boat he was on capsized off Padstow.
"These and the rescue of four groups of kayakers off Ilfracombe were all rescues carried out in very unseasonable weather.
The furthest distance travelled by a lifeboat in a single shout was carried out by St Mary’s lifeboat, from the Isles of Scilly, which launched to rescue a catamaran 80 nautical miles offshore and tow it back to harbour.
Tom Mansell added "Once again our volunteer crews have shown that they are committed and brave individuals, on stand by to save lives at sea come rain or shine even during the summer when they deserve their own time off to be with their families. I thank them for their continuing dedication and I thank their families for their invaluable support too."