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Last Updated: Monday, 18 July, 2005, 15:31 GMT 16:31 UK
New lifeboat to speed up rescues
Tamar Class lifeboat
The Tamar Class lifeboat (picture by Tim Stevens)
A new 2m lifeboat will help speed up search and rescue missions off the coast of Cumbria.

Barrow Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) station is to take delivery of the Tamar Class next year.

It will replace the current vessel, the 19-year-old Tyne Class James Bibby and will be bigger and faster and more able to cope in bad weather.

It is claimed the new lifeboat is the most technologically advanced ever designed by the RNLI.

The Tamar class is 16m (52ft) long and travels at 25 knots compared to the Tyne Class which is 14m (46ft) and travels at 17 knots.

Andrew Ashton, RNLI Divisional Insp for the North, said: "The Tamar is the result of several years of research and development to produce the next generation of slipway-launched lifeboat.

"The RNLI is constantly working to improve our fleet to meet the changing demands placed on our volunteer lifeboat crews while saving lives at sea.

"Barrow's new lifeboat will enable the crew to reach casualties faster and more safely than ever before, even in the very worst weather conditions."

The vessel's on-board System and Information Management System (Sims) will mean crew members can monitor and control the lifeboat's systems via computer screens without leaving their seats.

This will mean crews will be less likely to be thrown off balance and injured in rough seas.


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