Rescue teams respond to emergency beacon

Girvan lifeboat.
Girvan lifeboat.

Girvan and Ballantrae coastguard rescue teams and Girvan lifeboat responded to an emergency beacon yesterday afternoon which was found to have went off by accident.

At 3.45pm on Tuesday 12th September, Girvan lifeboat’s volunteer crew were paged by the UK Coastguard operations centre at Belfast to reports of an emergency beacon activation.

Girvan’s all-weather lifeboat ‘Silvia Burrell’ launched on service and proceeded south to where the beacon’s signal was last intercepted.

Whilst the crew carried out a search pattern from before Lendalfoot to the Ballantrae area and back again, the Coastguard Rescue Teams were conducting a shoreline search, with Belfast Coastguard and Police Scotland making further enquiries.

Further updates said the coastguard had triangulated the signal which was now showing to be coming from land, with this Girvan Lifeboat stood down and returned to station, leaving Girvan and Ballantrae CRT teams to conclude their search.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) ascertained that the beacon belonged to a fishing vessel and with the coastguard rescue teams having confirmed that no persons were reported missing the search was stood down.

A spokeswoman for the MCA said: “The coastguard got in touch with the vessel and it is possible that the beacon was moved out of place and went off by accident.

“The thing we concentrate on is that no-one is missing or in danger, we would always rather be out on the job in case someone needs us. In this instance we checked and no one was in trouble so the incident was then closed.”

Girvan Lifeboat was back on station and made ready for service at 6.30pm.