MANX lifeboat launches increased during 2012, bucking the trend in the UK.
The latest figures from the Royal National Lifeboat Institute charity reveal 68 people were rescued by the island’s RNLI, the highest number since 2009.
Launches are also at their highest since 2009, with 47 lifeboat launches on the island in 2012.
Peel’s all-weather lifeboat saw the largest increase with its rescue figures almost doubling to 26 from the same period in the previous year. The station’s launch figures also doubled to 12 call-outs.
Ramsey had a busy year with its launches rising by 57 per cent, from seven to 11.
Rescues increased by 50 per cent from eight to 12.
Port St Mary reported a slight decrease in launches, but rescues increased to 15 people. Port Erin’s station experienced a small increase in launches and a rise in people rescued to 10.
Douglas figures showed little change from 2011 with six launches in 2012 compared with the previous year’s seven.
The Manx RNLI volunteers spent 853 hours at sea in 2012, made up of 470 hours responding to emergencies and 382 hours training.
Martyn Smith, regional operations manager for the island’s RNLI, said: ‘Whilst it would be easy to assume one of the wettest years on record would mean a quieter year for us, the services of our volunteers have never been more in demand.
‘And it’s not just our crew who are committed – they wouldn’t be able to carry out their lifesaving work without the incredible generosity of the public and I would like to say a huge thank you to all those who support the RNLI.’
The island’s most common casualty type was people requiring assistance to return to shore, while machinery failure was the most common cause of service.
Overall, around the UK and Republic of Ireland coast, the RNLI launched 8,321 times in 2012, compared with 8,920 in 2011, a decrease of 7 per cent. A total of 7,912 people were rescued.
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