Four rescued seconds before their speedboat sinks in the Thames

Four young people were rescued by London lifeboat crew members just
moments before their speedboat sank to the bottom of the Thames.

The drama unfolded around 2pm yesterday afternoon when the group’s boat began taking on water just south of the
Millennium Bridge.

Unable to stem the ingress of water, the group then
alerted the Coastguard using their mobile phone, before preparing to
abandon ship.

The crew of Tower RNLI raced to the
scene in their E class lifeboat, pulling all four occupants to safety
with moments to spare as the boat then sank before them.

None of the group were
wearing lifejackets.

Helmsman Stuart Morrison said: ‘Most of the UK has been basking in
glorious sunshine this weekend, and whilst we’d urge people to make the
most of it, we’d also remind them of the importance of keeping safe near
the water.

‘In this instance, we really were there in the nick of time,
but had it been different, then these four individuals would have ended
up in the Thames without lifejackets.’

With the four relieved occupants safely aboard the lifeboat, the crew
were able to tether their boat, whose bow was still sticking out of the
water, so that it did not become a hazard to passing vessels. The Port
of London Authority and the Fire Service then arrived on scene to
recover the boat.

As much of the UK basks in tropical temperatures and thousands flock
to the coast and inland waterways, the charity’s lifeboats and
lifeguards have been busy making sure all those on the water are safe.

On Saturday alone, RNLI lifeboats launched 51 times in one 24 hour

Chris Walker, Tower RNLI crew member, added: ‘If you’re heading out
on the water, remember to always wear a lifejacket.

‘It might be a
warm day but accidents can and do happen.’

Click here to watch the video

Pictures: Tower RNLI rescue four from sinking speedboat. Credit: RNLI