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May 19 2014.

Newhaven’s relief Severn Class lifeboat ‘RNLB Volunteer Spirit’ was launched on the 17th of May at 1:30pm to search for a ten year old boy on a child’s kayak, who had been swept offshore.

Solent Coastguard had reports of a ten year old boy adrift in a yellow kayak who was being followed by his father and eight year old sister in a yellow inflatable who were also swept out to sea. The actual position at this time was unknown, but they were almost out of sight from the cliff top. All three casualties were wearing buoyancy vests.

The position given was in line with the eastern part of the undercliff sea defences at Peacehaven. Newhaven lifeboat made best speed to the area and all three casualties were quickly spotted approximately half a mile from the shore at the western end of the undercliff.

All three casualties were brought on board the lifeboat and given refreshments before being dropped off near the beach into the care of Newhaven Coastguards.

The lifeboat was then stood down and returned to station. Newhaven lifeboat was again ready for service at 2:30pm.

Newhaven Lifeboat second Coxswain Lee Blacknell explained: “When children are using such watercraft, it is worth keeping a line attached from the shore, as they can be easily swept out by the strong currents.”