Fabulous RNLI weekend you all missed!!


New member
10 Nov 2003
Well, all but Muminator, anyway. She was there too.
The RNLI ran a Sea Safety Course at Poole HQ that for me was the best course on Sea safety I have yet done. The main point was that it was from the Lifeboat perspective. Instead of renowned nautical pundits telling us how they did it, we heard how many of us make simple mistakes, and the outcomes of those mistakes when seen from the position of our rescuers. A new perspecrive for me.
There were lectures on subjects as wide as helicopter rescue, given by a pilot and his diver/paramedic, to rigging a tow on small yachts or power boats. When the boat saving you is a 2500 hp lifeboat with a rope the size of of my waist (well nearly, anyway), guidance on how to best fix it to something strong on your boat is very helpful. We did the water thing too; climbing into a liferaft, how to jump into the water, how to conserve body heat, and the pool (unheated, wasn't I brave!!) had 2 foot waves, rain (freezing) and lightening and thunder. They simulated night, so we had to find the lights in and on the liferafts, and had a panicking instructor leaping aboard. Scary! It was so well organised that we were even issued with a big waterproof sack with our name on it for our wet clothing!
Some of the things really stick out for me, driving the lifeboat simulator, with all sorts of dreadful things sprung on us. They made it very foggy for me, then when the fog lifted, there was a submarine dead ahead!
The safety equipment was done by groups of us presented with real scenarios. Then our ideas were compared with what had really happened.
Needless to say, we had a tour of a Severn Class lifeboat, which even for me was pretty interesting. Bit like a rally car for about five drivers/navigators/engineers. Black all round, very spartan except for the most comfy sprung seats. And loads of the latest electronics.
The MOB presentation was done as a demonstration, showing us several ways of actually lifting somebody out of the water. The advice, common sense really, is to set everything up before you set off, so you never have to rush around trying to find what you neede. We will be setting up a pully system for me to lift HWMBO (if he behaves, of course).
Setting off flares was good, I for one haven't actually done that before. Tips on how to hold them, and where to aim them was helpful. Seemingly the Helicopter pilot had a flare fired straight at the aircraft; luckily it went between the rotor blades.
The whole weekend was held at the RNLI College which is pretty good, with excellent accommodation, and very good catering.
I really enjoyed myself, maybe you could tell that(!). If you can, go on one, they will hopefully be doing this again. /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif


New member
5 Sep 2003
Well I was there from the other side of the fence,
We helped out by providing a trade stand, radio's for the staff and also a number of live radio DSC simulators.

I was also helping with the DSC simulations, apart from the time I was accosted by the very nice people of the Dorset Police Marine Division.

As Becky said it was a great weekend.
The Severn simulator is fantastic, I had to be dragged out!!
Its a very strange sensation, you know you are not moving but you really think you are.
I also found it stranged to be buzzed by a Russian Helo gun ship whislt coming along side a sinking tanker!!! /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif

One of the highlights for me was the food.
I was expecting the bog standard food you normally get at this kind of places.
How wrong was I!!!

If they run these again and there is a whisper they might.
Go it is well worth it.



New member
4 Aug 2004
Chichester, Sussex
Well, Becky, you said it all for me!

I'm still buzzing from the weekend - so much packed in, so professionally done, and so much learned.

The facility at Poole is amazing, great to know that our Liferaft crews will have access to such superb training facilities.

Absolutely the most comprehensive and enjoyable course I've been on since I started sailing. And very good value for money, to boot.

Get your names down on the waiting list, everyone - you won't regret it!