Search and rescue hovercraft launched to aid injured kitesurfer

Southend RNLI hovercraft
Southend's RNLI crews assist kitesurfer
Lifeboat crews assist the injured kitesurfer. Photo: RNLI

Southend’s RNLI crews were dispatched to assist a kitesurfer with suspected back injuries.

The Southend-based Atlantic 75 lifeboat and the search and rescue hovercraft were launched this afternoon to reports of a kitesurfer who had sustained leg and back injuries.

The volunteer lifeboat crews located the casualty approximately three quarters of a mile off East Beach, Shoeburyness. After assessing his injuries, the crews transferred him to a spinal board and made him comfortable.

Due to the initial reports of possible back injuries, the search and rescue helicopter based at Wattisham in Suffolk was also dispatched and landed nearby on the mud.

The casualty was taken by the helicopter to Southend Airport, where he was transferred to an awaiting ambulance for the short journey to Southend Hospital’s A&E department.

The lifeboat returned to the boathouse and the search and rescue hovercraft took the casualty’s equipment back to shore at East Beach before returning to the station.

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