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Facebook SOS Leads To Sea Rescue

fowey lifeboat
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7:02am 11th July 2014

A Facebook SOS leads to a teenager being plucked from the sea off Mevagissey.

The eighteen year old had been treading water in the dark for two hours before being rescued on Thursday night.

He had used the last of his mobile battery to post the single word "stranded" online.

A friend passed it to his mum - who called coastguards.

Both Fowey lifeboats joined the search and found him around a mile off shore after his dingy capsized on a trip from Portmellon.

Jeremy Lynn from Brixham Coastguard said: "The message just said 'stranded.' One of his friends picked it up and passed it to his mother. It was obviously one of the last methods he had of using his mobile phone to call for help.

"He is obviously a fit young lad, but was only in shorts and a t-shirt. The water temperatures is only around 15-16 degrees at this time of year so he would have been quite cold."

A spokesperson for Fowey lifeboat said: "Both RNLI lifeboats were taken at speed to the general area to begin a shoreline search from Portmellon towards Dodman Point.

"On the way across St Austell Bay to Portmellon the inshore lifeboat crewmembers found a young man in the water a mile from shore.  He had capsized and, because the boat was drifting, had decided to swim for Blackhead after managing to get a message onto Facebook before his phone died.

"He was immediately transferred to the all-weather lifeboat and made comfortable while being taken to Fowey Lifeboat Station where an ambulance was waiting to assess him.  He was wearing a t-shirt, shorts and trainers and was very cold as he had been in treading water for 2 hours."

A spokesman for the RNLI charity said he was incredibly lucky to be found as generally it is easier to find a larger object such as the actual dinghy.

7:02am 11th July 2014

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