Rescue heroes put to the test

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LIFEBOAT volunteers put their skills to the test during a training exercise.

Neil Williams from Blackpool Lifeboat Station and Tom Stuart from Lytham St Annes Lifeboat Station went to the north east’s Teeside Barrage International White Water Centre to put their flood rescue skills to the test in the exercise, which coincided with the second anniversary of the Cockermouth floods when RNLI crews helped rescue more than 200 people.

The exercise involved 20 RNLI volunteer crew members from lifeboat stations around the country. They spent the weekend learning and improving the specialist skills required to deal with inland flooding.

Mr Williams said: “Exercises like this are one of the ways the RNLI ensures volunteers like myself and Tom are prepared for any rescue scenario in what is a demanding and challenging environment.”

The duo are also on the RNLI’s International Flood Rescue Team, formed in 2000 following flooding in Mozambique, and can be deployed anywhere in the world at 24hrs notice.