A RNLI Facebook fundraiser showing RNLI Hastings Lifeboat Station returning from a callout during Storm Ciara has raised £26,845 to date.
The video footage, shot by bystander Paul Hogg, showed the lifeboat braving the rough seas and looking very close to capsizing. Hogg’s 9 February post on Twitter has so far seen 2m views, and many thousands of shares.
The Hastings lifeboat had launched with six volunteer crew onboard after a surfer was reported in difficulty.
RNLI’s Facebook Donate post went live on the same day, stating that the casualty and crew had all returned safely from the callout, and thanking people for their support. Almost 1,900 people have now donated, raising £26,845 – significantly above the usual amount raised by the charity in this manner.
Incredible @Hastingsrnli footage captured today by a member of public. Everyone onboard is safe and well. Casualty made it to shore. Thanks to your support our lifeboat crew receive the best training and lifeboats, to withstand these types of conditions. #PerfectStorm #StormCiara pic.twitter.com/Cvr9cHjv6L
— RNLI (@RNLI) February 9, 2020
RNLI Social Media Manager Rich Ward told UK Fundraising:
“A benchmark amount for us on Facebook Donate is normally around £1,000, so this is certainly not an ordinary post!
“We think it’s down to a combination of extraordinary footage (such an incident is very rare – none of our current design of all-weather boat have capsized and this is the first knock down on a Shannon – and it happened to be caught on camera) and timeliness, as we were able to get the post out over the weekend when Storm Ciara was trending and people were spending more time on social media because of the bad weather.
“Our warm social media audience is also very engaged generally with our organic content and particularly receptive of lifeboat videos, and our lifeboat crews were already heroes in their eyes before this rescue mission!
“We’re very grateful to bystander Paul Hogg who captured the footage and shared it with us and we’re overwhelmed by the heartfelt comments and generous donations we received from our supporters.”
According to RNLI, it is very rare for a knock down to be captured on camera, and if you are wondering how RNLI’s lifeboats manage to stay upright, here is an explanation:
Were you wondering how @Hastingsrnli's Shannon managed to recover so quickly from the knockdown we all saw during #StormCiara? We caught up with Senior Naval Architect Ed Davies on the science behind its lifesaving self-righting capability. pic.twitter.com/FXl1M31qdV
— RNLI (@RNLI) February 14, 2020
Main image credit: Paul Hogg
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