RNLI crews help badly injured man after cliff fall


A badly-injured man was rescued by volunteer RNLI lifeboat crew members this morning after falling from cliffs.

The alarm was raised shortly after 2.30am when Northumbria Police requested assistance from Humber Coastguard after the man, believed to be in his early twenties, fell from cliffs at Frenchman”s Bay, South Shields, suffering multiple injuries including a number of broken bones.

Both Tynemouth RNLI inshore and all weather lifeboats with a total of nine volunteer crew members were launched, and raced to the scene. Paramedics and the shore-based Sunderland Coastguard Rescue Team were also en-route to join police officers already there.

The lifeboats arrived at Frenchman”s Bay just five minutes after launching, with one crew member from the inshore lifeboat wading ashore to assist paramedics who were already treating the man. The all weather lifeboat stood off a short distance from the beach, illuminating the area with searchlights and parachute flares.

It was decided to evacuate the man from the beach by lifeboat and once the man was able to be moved he was placed on a stretcher and carried to the inshore lifeboat, then transferred to the much bigger all weather lifeboat which sped him to a waiting ambulance at South Shields ferry landing where members of the South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade were also waiting to assist with getting the man safely ashore.

Once the casualty was on his way to hospital the lifeboat crews were stood down by Humber Coastguard.

Adrian Don, spokesman for Tynemouth RNLI lifeboat station, said: “The man had fallen some distance down the cliff onto the beach, sustaining multiple serious injuries and bleeding badly, but amazingly he was concious throughout his ordeal.

“Our volunteer lifeboat crew members followed their extensive training and used their experience in poor sea conditions, working with the Coastguard and other emergency services in a coordinated rescue effort to get the injured man to hospital as fast as possible.

“At this time it”s not known how the man came to fall from the cliff but we hope he makes a full recovery.”