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Heatstroke-stricken motorboater rescued off Exmouth

Exmouth inshore lifeboat (courtesy: James Searle)

Man drifting in and out of consciousness

A motorboater suffering from heatstroke on a very hot summer's day was drifting in and out of consciousness when he was picked up by the crew of Exmouth's inshore lifeboat on Saturday afternoon.

The coastguard called the service just before 4.30pm on Saturday to reports of a broken down rib.

The man, alone on his boat, was said to be in distress as the boat drifted near Littleham Cove. He had made several unsuccessful attempts to restart his engine for some time. 

Within 20 minutes or so of the call, the crew located the rib. They could see the man was suffering from heatstroke, dehydration and by this time was drifting in and out of consciousness because of the unusually hot weather conditions. It became clear the individual required very urgent medical attention.  T

The crew took the casualty on board the lifeboat and to safety at Steamer Steps, Budleigh Salterton. Exmouth RNLI medical advisor Dr Jane Aitken was close to the incident and was able to give immediate first aid to the casualty before an ambulance crew arrived. 

Helm Roy Stott said: “Anyone taking to the water in these unusually hot weather conditions should ensure that they take an adequate supply of water and a means of shade. The heat and sun can be just as damaging on the water as off. I was pleased that myself and my crew were able to convey the casualty to safety and prompt medical assistance as soon as we could.

Comprehensive RNLI safety advice for motorboating can be found here :

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