England

Four-year high in Coastguard callouts as heatwave sees beaches packed

Coastguard rescue teams were called out to 340 incidents across the UK on Saturday – the highest number in a single day for more than four years.

According to the search and rescue agency, it responded to 186 calls to emergency services for a "wide range of incidents".

They included people being cut off by the tide on beaches and children swept out to sea on inflatables.

Image: Brighton beach was packed on Saturday, with people flocking to beaches and swimming in the sea

In total, the service:

  • Dealt with 221 incidents for the Coastguard Rescue Teams
  • Rescued 146 people
  • Assisted a further 371 people

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) and independent lifeboats were also called out on 155 occasions.

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The Maritime and Coastguard Agency said call-outs for Coastguard Rescue Teams, Coastguard Aircraft and Lifeboats are all logged individually before the total number is calculated later on.

This is due to some rescue services (lifeboats, search and rescue helicopters) being sent to the same incident.

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It came after Saturday was declared the hottest day in August for 17 years, as temperatures reached more than 34C in the south east.

Images from beaches around the UK's coast showed how they became packed as people soaked up the sunshine and warm weather, despite Britons being told to stay away due to coronavirus concerns.

Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole (BCP) Council's beach check app showed 19 of its 24 beaches under red alert by the afternoon.

34.5 °C appears to be our maximum #temperature today, with Wiggonholt and Herstmonceux joining Frittenden at the top spot. After 3 days of temperatures widely above 30 °C #heatwave conditions are now widespread across E & SE England, with temps remaining high into next week https://t.co/DgqMFqhalH

— Met Office (@metoffice) August 8, 2020

The red alert warned people to avoid the areas because safe social distancing was not possible.

The remaining beaches were under amber, meaning they were crowded and the public should "stay alert".

Coastal towns Margate and Brighton were also packed during the day.

Crowds built up on Margate beach on Friday too as the UK is facing a three day heatwave
Image: Crowds built up on Margate beach on Friday too as the UK is facing a three day heatwave

Saturday's incident count represented a significant 145% increase compared to the average amount of call-outs they recorded throughout August 2019, the agency said.

The count also surpassed previoRead More – Source

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