Saturday 23 September 2017

Lifeboat crew launched after 'body' spotted pick up white suit

The white protective suit that was recovered after the RNLI Peterhead Tamar Lifeboat was launched, at the request of UK Coastguard (RNLI/PA)
The white protective suit that was recovered after the RNLI Peterhead Tamar Lifeboat was launched, at the request of UK Coastguard (RNLI/PA)

A lifeboat crew launched to recover a possible human body - but it turned out to be a white protective suit.

The RNLI Peterhead Tamar Lifeboat was called out after people on a commercial helicopter spotted what they thought was a body floating in the sea.

The volunteer crew carried out a plotted search of the area, around 10 miles off Peterhead in Aberdeenshire, and located the object.

However rather than finding a body they found a white protective suit similar to that which a painter might wear, floating on the water.

David Anderson, Peterhead RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat spokesman, said: "The crew were very relieved that it was not a body and very pleased with themselves for finding such a small item in a very large area of sea.

"We have no idea where it was from as it is a funny looking suit with a hood.

"It is always good to have a successful shout. The target area was quite small and to be able to find the object near the original position says a lot for the RNLI boys."

The lifeboat, called The Misses Robertson Of Kintail, launched at around 11am on Friday and returned to its berth at 1pm, having recovered the suit.

Sea conditions were calm and visibility was good during the search.

Andy Brown, Peterhead lifeboat coxswain, said: "We started a plotted search at the original reported position of the 'body', worked out the tide direction and after a number of search legs spotted the white suit."

He added: "It was very strange because the white paper suit was spotted by a helicopter that was flying overhead, presumably it was taking the guys to offshore rigs.

"They noticed the white suit and the way you see the suit flat on the water it just looks like a man lying in the water, so it was a good call from the helicopter.

"It was a well intentioned shout though nothing came of it.

"We were pleased to find it, it's all down to good training, team work and having the proper equipment to do the job. We were only searching for about 21 minutes when we found the paper suit so that's pretty good."

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