Lowestoft Lifeboat coxswain describes rescue of three men from Lake Lothing

Lowestoft Lifeboat. Picture: Mick Howes

Lowestoft Lifeboat. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Mick Howes

Volunteer lifesavers helped to haul two men from Lake Lothing, while assisting a third to safety on Friday morning.

Lowestoft Lifeboat 'Reg' returning from a rescue. Picture: Mick Howes

Lowestoft Lifeboat 'Reg' returning from a rescue. Picture: Mick Howes - Credit: Mick Howes

The volunteer crew of Lowestoft RNLI Lifeboat was called to the incident in Lowestoft at around 8.45am this monring, to reports of three people in the water just west of the town's Bascule bridge.

The crew were despatched as part of a rescue mission that also involved police, ambulance crews, the coastguard and the fire service.

John Fox, lifeboat coxwain, said: 'We launched very quickly and the bridge was opened straight away so we could get to the incident, which was close to the former Port House quay.

'RNLI Lifeguard supervisor Nick Ayers, who was nearby, quick joined us. Somebody had already throw a lifebelt into the water and the rope from it had been tied around the waist of one of the men in the water.

'I manoeuvred the lifeboat close to him and Mr Ayers helped place a strop around the man and our crew then hauled him onto the lifeboat.

'They then pulled a second person onto the boat.'

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Mr Fox said officers from both the police and Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service also boarded the lifeboat to assist in the rescue, helping to wrap the rescuee in blankets.'

One of the other people in the water was helped to climb back up a ladder onto the quay, while the lifeboat took the other two to the silo steps, where they were brought ashore and put into the care of paramedics.

One of the men, believed to be in his late 20s to early 30s, was then taken to the James Paget University Hospital for further treatment - though his injuries were not thought to be life-threatening.

The rescue came around eight hours after the crew assisted a 19m racing yacht, which had suffered an electrical failure resulting in the loss of navigation lights and an intermittent radio.

The vessel had been travelling from Helsinki to Southampton to take part in a race and was escorted into Lowestoft by the lifeboat crew. It had seven people onn board.