Fleetwood Nautical Campus staff and students assist with rescue at local boating lake

Published on 11/04/2018 by pfi

Staff and students from Fleetwood Nautical Campus were able to use their lifesaving skills to prevent tragedy when a family got into difficulties at a seafront boating lake.

The incident at Fleetwood Boating Lake on Monday saw Antony and Laura Gilderdale's daughter, Emily, fall into the water. Mum Laura went in to rescue her but a pram holding five-month-old baby, Amelia, then rolled in and became fully submerged.

Staff and students from the College were at the College’s facility on the lake undertaking sea survival training and were able to spring into action.

Fortunately, they were able to help bring all parties to safety.

As well as a 49-year career at the nautical campus, lecturer John Bradbury has worked with HM Coastguard for 37 years while colleague David Jordan has more than two decades experience working with the RNLI.

Their colleague Graham Williamson contacted an ambulance and helped cadet Phil Devoy, who has previous paediatric care training, to support the family until an ambulance arrived to check them over. John said:

“We were running the Personal Survival Craft and Rescue Boats course in the classroom here at the lake at the time, which is all to do with survival training.

“We heard a loud scream and realised there was a commotion going on so we all sprinted down the quay to where it was happening. We didn’t know what was going on at first but soon realised a disaster was unfolding.

“The mum had been crabbing with the older child who had slipped down the slope into the water. She was concerned about that one and went in the water to get her and unfortunately the pushchair also went in with the baby strapped in.

“When we arrived, the two children were thankfully back on the quayside but the mother couldn’t get out of the water so we assisted in getting her out and got them all back to the office to provide aftercare and warm them up. Our student Phil was also able to use his expertise in paediatric care to help look after the baby.

“We all work in the Maritime area at the College and deliver many courses which have elements related to personal safety and safety at sea, as well as backgrounds working with the RNLI and the Coastguard, so we were well prepared to help.

“When you work in this area you have the skills and training to provide assistance in rescue situations. We’re just pleased we were able to help and the family were all ok.”

Since the incident, dad Antony returned to the scene on Tuesday to thank the team and give a £50 donation to the staff members’ chosen charity.