Stonehaven gets its new lifeboat

The volunteer crew spent a week getting to know the new lifeboat
The volunteer crew spent a week getting to know the new lifeboat

Stonehaven’s new and improved lifeboat has arrived and started operations.

The Atlantic 85 Pride of Fred Olsen replaces the RNLI station’s older Atlantic 75, called Miss Betty, the last inshore vessel of its type still in service in Scotland.

After a week of intense training for the volunteer crew, the new lifeboat was declared fully operational last Friday.

The vessel has several advantages over its predecessor with room for up to four crew members and considerably more rescue equipment.

The Atlantic 85 is powered by two 115hp engines, has a stronger hull and an increased top speed of 35 knots.

Radar allows the crew to operate more effectively in poor visibility, with VHF direction-finding equipment to assist in locating vessels in difficulty.

There is also a much-improved and upgraded suite of communication and electronic navigation aids, as well as a searchlight, night-vision equipment and flares for night-time operations.

Commenting on the new boat, Lifeboat operations manager Andy Martin said: “It’s a very exciting time for us all at Stonehaven RNLI.

“I would like to thank the crew and RNLI staff for their time and commitment over the past week.

“The shore crew and lifeboat crew took part in a week of intense training to familiarise themselves with the new lifeboat.”

He added: “The RNLI is committed to working to the highest standards and it’s important that we as volunteer lifeboat crew are trained to deal with any situation when out at sea.”

The RNLI depends on donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service.