Berthon - 02 July 2021

The RIB arrives in time for the summer holidays when Jersey’s beaches and water-based activities will be busier than ever due to the pandemic.

 After the creation of Jersey Lifeboat Association (JLA) in 2018, the charity is delighted to take delivery of the fastest inshore rescue vessel in the Channel Islands if not the British Isles. This vessel will complement their existing Tyne Class Lifeboat and will be the most modern rescue RIB in the British Isles.

The RIB will enable the JLA to carry our quick inshore work as well as have a larger operational range. The global pandemic has meant the waters around Jersey have become busier and the RIB will arrive just in time for the demanding summer season.

Following sea trials aboard a standard Gemini WR880, the JLA confirmed their intent to purchase a WR880 having been impressed with its outstanding sea-keeping abilities and Gemini’s proven track record of keeping life safe at sea.

In a statement, Andy Hibbs, coxswain of the JLA, paid tribute to the generous donors who have made the new delivery possible saying, “As a Jersey charity, it is incredible to be able to fund this new RIB purely through local donations, particularly given the pandemic. The vessel will be a fantastic asset for the station, crew and all those that use Jersey waters”.

The Gemini vessel is custom-made to accommodate detailed specs from JLA. Berthon said in a statement “The Berthon Gemini team worked for many hours to design a platform to house the extensive suite of on-board electronics that will assist the JLA crew in locating and rescuing persons, including; radar, remote-controlled searchlights, DF Antenna and two FLIR cameras.”

Twin Mercury 225hp outboard motors, give a top operational speed of 50+ knots, supplied by two 300 litre long-range fuel tanks. The advanced water ballast system guarantees the stability through rough sea states.

The RIB is also fitted with the latest shock mitigation seating from Shoxs. As well as keeping the crew comfortable, this advanced seating mitigates whole-body vibration, enabling the crew to arrive at the casualty, ready to assist, not worn out having experienced a debilitating rough ride.

Berthon RIB Solutions are gratified to be able to see this project through from start to finish, from vision to reality. Ben Slater, Project Manager commented:

'It is a privilege to have the opportunity to work with JLA in the build of their new rescue RIB. The boat is designed from the ground up, learning from all of the features found on other similar craft resulting in a highly capable life-saving platform. I can't wait to see the vessel on-station, looking after all seafarers in Jersey.'

The rescue service JLA provide is nothing but inspiring, even through the trial of a global pandemic, they continue to influence, supervise, and educate people with the fantastic work they do in the island’s local communities. Here at Berthon, we are delighted to have established this working partnership and proud to be able to provide JLA with the most modern rescue RIB in the British Isles.

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