A former Bridlington lifeboatman is being honoured for his heroic actions during a dramatic rescue which saved a man’s life in Cumbria.
Andy Rodgers, 33, will be awarded one of the RNLI’s highest honours - The Thanks of the Institution inscribed on Vellum, for his part in the rescue of an injured man from a trawler at Whitehaven in December.
Andy, the RNLI’s Divisional Maintenance manager, was working at Workington Lifeboat Station when the crew were called to help the George lou-N, a 25-metre trawler which had suffered mechanical failure in storm force winds.
Andy was asked to drive to Whitehaven with some of the crew to assist at the harbour.
With the trawler being battered by four metre waves against the outer wall of the harbour, Andy made the decision to jump onto the ship’s deck to help a crew member with a serious head injury.
These actions placed Andy at considerable risk, but were essential to provide an accurate assessment of the casualty and to convey information to the lifeboat crew.
Along with Andy several of the lifeboat crew that day were awarded RNLI Vellum Service Certificates and Coxswain John Stobbart was also honoured with a Vellum for his remarkable boat handling skills and leadership during the operation.
Andy said: “It’s just good to see that all the training that the lifeboat crews are given works, and that is all down to the voluntary contributions that keep the organisation going.
“It’s not just me and John that were involved, it was a team effort and it is really good news that the injured guy came out of it all alright.”
Sarah Nimmo-Scott, RNLI Deputy Divisional Inspector, said: “The actions of Mr Rodgers in taking the initiative to gain access to the casualty vessel were selfless and brave.
“By doing this he was able to give an accurate report of the situation to the approaching Workington lifeboat allowing the coxswain to formulate a plan.”
Ms Nimmo-Scott said the actions of Coxswain Stobbart, Mr Rodgers and the volunteer crew not only saved the man’s life, they also saved the vessel from breaking up against the harbour wall.
Andy worked as a crewman for the Bridlington RNLI for 10 years before becoming RNLI Maintenance Manager and still lives in the town with his wife Lucy.