Blessing Of New Sea Rescue Vessel

Deacon Earnest Fritz and Father Allan Williams blessing the vessel

A small ceremony to bless a new Sea Rescue vessel took place at 5.30pm at Rupert’s Wharf yesterday, Wednesday 7 July 2021. The Ceremony was led by Deacon Earnest Fritz and Father Allan Williams, following which the vessel was launched for its inaugural run in St Helena’s waters.

The St Helena Sea Rescue Service took delivery of their new Gemini Surf 420 rescue vessel which was generously donated to the Service by the UK’s Maritime & Coastguard Agency on Friday, 11 June 2021, – thanks to the HM Coastguard Overseas Territory Search & Rescue Capability Review. The Review advised St Helena Government to consider procurement of a small craft or RIB to allow easier/safer access to St Helena’s shore during rescue operations.

Sea Rescue Manager, Simon Wade, explained:

“This specific type of vessel has been in South Africa’s National Sea Rescue Institute’s fleet for over 30 years. It is 4.2m in length and equipped with a 50hp Yamaha 2-stroke motor and carries 25L of fuel which gives it a range of 10nm. This vessel is mainly used for surf work, meaning that it is used close to shore and limited to going 1nm offshore.”

Sea Rescue team will use this vessel for the insertion of assets and extraction of casualties when needed. This vessel does not replace the two bigger Gemini Wave Runner 850s but will be used to reduce the risk of damaging the bigger vessels and injuring the crew when operating in shallow water.

The Sea Rescue crew members were given the opportunity to choose a name for the new inshore rescue vessel. Of those names four of them were chosen and sent to the Primary Schools for years 5 and 6 to vote on the final name. The name ‘Rip Tide’ was the most popular name chosen.

#StHelena #SeaRescue #RescueVessel #AltogetherSafer


8 July 2021

St Helena Government Communications Hub

Telephone: 22470