Logging and identifying vessels is an essential part of the role of an NCI Watchkeeper. It enables us to respond quickly and with confidence when a vessel gets into trouble or we receive a call from the Coastguard asking for information about a particular vessel. Watchkeepers typically log each year 7000-8000 vessels of all shapes and sizes, from warships to rowng boats.
Incidents are logged and classified either as 'nationally reported', which generally means an incident involving the Coastguard, or 'locally reported' for less significant incidents such as calling an ambulance in a non-life-threatening situation.
Watchkeepers have recorded 53 incidents since January 2015 of which 4 have been recorded in 2021.
Incident Reports (April 2021 - July 2020)
13th April 2021
A phone call was received from a member of the public advising us of a young person on an inflatable airbed. They were being swept out to sea and were shouting for help. Solent coastguard were advised and Teignmouth ILB launched. A radio call from a local dredger was then received advising that they had picked up the casualty and were returning them to Teignmouth quay.
12th April 2021
We received a call from HMCG at Solent asking if we had visual on a child who was unwell on the beach. The child was located by the Watchkeeper and the position advised to Solent. An ambulance attended and treatment was given.
11th March 2021
Duty watchkeeper at 15.45 on the 11th March gave assistance and support to a member of the public after they had entered the water to rescue their dog from strong waves which were crashing against the sea wall on an incoming tide. The dog was rescued, but the owner struggled to get out of the water and fell twice before finally managing to get themselves out. The duty watchkeeper provided assistance as the lady concerned was in severe shock, cold and drenched. She was provided with a dry coat to wear and her husband was contacted and he shortly arrived to collect her.
1st February 2021
Contacted by Solent Coastguard at 08.45 on Monday 1st Feb after they received a report from a member of the public of a sunken boat off Sprey Point. View of Sprey Pont from lookout obscured by mist. Mist cleared at 08.59 and Solent advised that a large log/tree trunk was now visible off Sprey Point. Coastguard Land crew dispatched to our lookout and, with use of our 'scope, confirmed that it was a log/tree trunk. Coastguard crew stood down by Solent. and Dawlish.
28th December 2020
The destruction caused by storm Bella sent a large amount of debris in the form of tree trunks, branches etc down the river Teign. This debris was carried out to sea by the outgoing tide on Monday morning. The duty watchkeeper made contact with Solent Coastguard to report the debris as a likely hazard to any vessels in the area. HMCG dispatched one of their Coastguard Land Crew to establish the extent of the problem both at Teignmouth and Dawlish.
5th December 2020
Whilst on watch on Saturday, the Watchkeeper on duty took a phone call from HMCG who had been contacted by a member of the public reporting a person clinging to one of the groynes North of the pier. We were asked if we could see the area and identify if there was a problem? Close scrutiny with the telescope identified that it was an upright of wood giving the appearance of a human figure. This was later confirmed by the member of the public who also took a closer look.
19th September 2020
Teignmouth NCI were contacted by Solent Coastguard to ascertain if we had visual on a yacht thought to be in difficulties. We advised that a watch was already being maintained on her and that, although she was in rough water on a strong outgoing tide, she was making progress into harbour. We were thanked by Solent and no further action was needed.
12th August 2020
At 13:45 hrs we received a phone call from a member of the public concerned over the safety of 5 children swimming close to the harbour entrance. They were near the green buoy in a strong outgoing tide. HMCG contacted but before they could deploy any rescue assets they received a direct call advising them that the children had been recovered to land with assistance from a paddle boarder.
30th July 2020
Teign C, our local dredger, called our lookout this afternoon reporting a large silver object floating in the water. Our watchkeeper contacted RNLI beach lifeguards advising of object at 126 degrees from our lookout. RNLI surf rescue launched their jet ski and located the object. Thankfully, it turned out to be a large silver balloon, and not a capsized inflatable as was feared. Great team work by all concerned.
17th July 2020
A jet ski had broken down off Red Rock. The rider called Teignmouth NCI and our watchkeeper took the details and advised that he would contact HMCG. The message was relayed to HMCG who tasked Exmouth lifeboat to attend. They arrived on scene and commenced a tow towards the Parson and Clerk rocks. The tow was then taken over by Teignmouth Lifeboat who completed the tow into Teignmouth.
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