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March 18, 2022

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Lone worker safety

Fisherman’s life saved by crucial decision to utilise safety kit  

Fisherman Paul Reed, who went overboard from the Sydney Rose, miles from land, saved his own life by deciding to put on a lifejacket, equipped with a locator beacon, on the morning of the incident.

fishingPaul, who has been fishing for 38-years, has only had one man overboard experience, but is aware that once is all it takes to never return to shore again.

Paul activated his PLB, which alerted HM Coastguards to his position immediately who send the Plymouth and Salcombe RNLI lifeboats, the Hope Cove Independent lifeboat, and the search and rescue helicopter from Newquay to look for him.

His skipper then raised the alarm with a Mayday, confirming to authorities that the alert they were searching for was, in fact, a man overboard.

Paul was found 67 minutes later, cold but otherwise unharmed.

Speaking on the incident, Paul said: “I’m very glad it turned out well, you hear the stories and know it doesn’t always turn out this way. My message to other fishermen is simple: Wear a lifejacket. I did and it saved my life.

“They’re only small, they don’t get in the way when you’ve got them on, you get used to them, and if I didn’t have mine on, I wouldn’t be talking to you now.”

For more information on the incident, watch the video produced by the Maritime & Coastguard Agency, below: 

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