Firm steps in to support river safety charity York Rescue Boat

Matt Johnson,  Dave Benson, Peter Billam of Armstrong Massey and David Yodaiken pictured with the new York Rescue vehicle

Matt Johnson, Dave Benson, Peter Billam of Armstrong Massey and David Yodaiken pictured with the new York Rescue vehicle

First published in News
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A CHARITY which wants to help keep York's rivers safe has been given a huge boost from a local company.

The York Rescue Boat, which was set up by Dave Benson, is trying to raise £35,000 to provide a boat which would patrol the rivers on busy nights in York, and would be run by volunteers.

The group has already raised more than £4,000, and has this week been given exclusive use of a top of the range Land Rover 110 Utility by Armstrong Massey, which will be used first to raise awareness at fundraising events, and later to transport the boat as needed.

Dave Benson said: "We are really grateful for it. It will be a great asset to York Rescue Boat, and will initially be used for awareness and fundraising until we can get a boat and roll out as a frontline search and rescue patrol service.

"It will also be used to assist communities during flooding. We will have a flood assistance dinghy. We're never going to replace any of the existing services, just complement them and bolster what's out there at the moment and aid the community that bit more."

Peter Billham, dealer principal at Armstrong Massey on Tadcaster Road, which has provided the Land Rover, said the vehicle had room for five people, a stretcher, and all the emergency equipment the team could need once the rescue boat was up and running.

He said: "It's a local need and will help the city a lot. It's such a great cause, and this vehicle can get in most places. York can flood and the vehicle needs to get around, and whatever the situation is, this would be one of the best ways to do that job.

"All we hope is it can help save one life. If it saves one life, that's what's important. If we can do something that helps prevent any more deaths in the river, it's worthwhile."

Jackie Roberts, whose 20-year-old daughter Megan died in the Ouse earlier this year, is a supporter of York Rescue Boat, and welcomed the news.

She said: "I think it's fantastic that the charity has been getting support from a local business, it's great news."

Dave added: "I set the charity up with the aim of helping people who go into the river and trying to raise awareness and help. But it's a community service. That is what we're here for and if the authorities want to get on board, that would be great. We want to boost their services, not tread on anyone's toes, just provide a community service."

For more information on the rescue boat, go to yorkrescueboat.com

Comments (7)

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2:58pm Sat 2 Aug 14

nottoooldtocare says...

Hmmmmm, bit worrying this as the boat is needed on the presumption that more people will end up in the river. surely if the boat is needed then the awareness and education has fallen woefully short of what river safety awareness is about. The message to "revellers" or however you want to call them, is to look out for each other. Drink responsibly, don't let others (YOUR FRIENDS) wander off when they are clearly drunk.

Even more worrying is the suggestion of using it in floods. Remember the picture of the RNLI in a RIB being rescued just before the boat went under a bridge? tootling up and down York an a mild summer evening is one thing, putting out when the river Ouse is in flood is something else, the crew will need specialist training, or they will be the ones in trouble bobbing about in the Humber if they're lucky.
Education, education, education.
Hmmmmm, bit worrying this as the boat is needed on the presumption that more people will end up in the river. surely if the boat is needed then the awareness and education has fallen woefully short of what river safety awareness is about. The message to "revellers" or however you want to call them, is to look out for each other. Drink responsibly, don't let others (YOUR FRIENDS) wander off when they are clearly drunk. Even more worrying is the suggestion of using it in floods. Remember the picture of the RNLI in a RIB being rescued just before the boat went under a bridge? tootling up and down York an a mild summer evening is one thing, putting out when the river Ouse is in flood is something else, the crew will need specialist training, or they will be the ones in trouble bobbing about in the Humber if they're lucky. Education, education, education. nottoooldtocare
  • Score: 4

3:20pm Sat 2 Aug 14

CommonSense!! says...

You're assuming those crewing the boat won't be trained? That is a very silly assumption.

How many people have gone into the river this year? Four deaths so far, and countless others pulled out alive and we're only 2/3 of the way through the year, it is not unreasonable to suggest that whilst education is definitely worthwhile there will always be some who either ignore it, or get caught out, when a rescue boat will prove a valuable resource.

Put it another way, Dave and his team are doing something to try and reduce deaths in the Ouse, what are you doing to help? Rather than moaning and being negative why not congratulate people prepared to get stuck in and help.
You're assuming those crewing the boat won't be trained? That is a very silly assumption. How many people have gone into the river this year? Four deaths so far, and countless others pulled out alive and we're only 2/3 of the way through the year, it is not unreasonable to suggest that whilst education is definitely worthwhile there will always be some who either ignore it, or get caught out, when a rescue boat will prove a valuable resource. Put it another way, Dave and his team are doing something to try and reduce deaths in the Ouse, what are you doing to help? Rather than moaning and being negative why not congratulate people prepared to get stuck in and help. CommonSense!!
  • Score: 11

3:49pm Sat 2 Aug 14

nottoooldtocare says...

CommonSense!! wrote:
You're assuming those crewing the boat won't be trained? That is a very silly assumption.

How many people have gone into the river this year? Four deaths so far, and countless others pulled out alive and we're only 2/3 of the way through the year, it is not unreasonable to suggest that whilst education is definitely worthwhile there will always be some who either ignore it, or get caught out, when a rescue boat will prove a valuable resource.

Put it another way, Dave and his team are doing something to try and reduce deaths in the Ouse, what are you doing to help? Rather than moaning and being negative why not congratulate people prepared to get stuck in and help.
I thought the clue might be in our user names. I'm not too old to care. Had the people this boat is being prepared for got any of your title (common sense), they wouldn't be in the flippin river would they; and the boat wouldn't be needed! The very fact you feel we need a boat suggests to me that you can't educate pork. In my day we looked out for each other and would stop foolhardy attempts to swim the river etc. However none of us got that pi**ed that we were allowed to wander off alone and risk ending up in the drink. We got clattered yes, but we looked after each other, something that it would appear can not be said of some of those who have lost their lives. If this is moaning, then guilty as charged. I've done some silly things in my time, but I've never abandoned someone too pi**ed to know what they are doing.

With regard to training the rescuers, can you confirm that the crew have received fast water flow /white water type training? My comment was not intended to be negative, it was expressing concern that this type of training would be essential. The RNLI underestimated this and it nearly cost them dearly, so much so they have improved their training for inland flood waters, and they are professional rescuers. The river Ouse can flow at rates in excess of 500 cumecs (cubic metres per second) through York. if they are appropriately trained then all's well and dandy. I might be wrong, but didn't most of those that lost their lives go in unnoticed? If that is/was the case, then the boat will not be used for rescue. It may sound harsh, and it might not be what you want to hear, but unless the message gets through and revellers take responsibility for themselves and each other, the press will be reporting on more preventable loss of life, boat or no boat.
[quote][p][bold]CommonSense!![/bold] wrote: You're assuming those crewing the boat won't be trained? That is a very silly assumption. How many people have gone into the river this year? Four deaths so far, and countless others pulled out alive and we're only 2/3 of the way through the year, it is not unreasonable to suggest that whilst education is definitely worthwhile there will always be some who either ignore it, or get caught out, when a rescue boat will prove a valuable resource. Put it another way, Dave and his team are doing something to try and reduce deaths in the Ouse, what are you doing to help? Rather than moaning and being negative why not congratulate people prepared to get stuck in and help.[/p][/quote]I thought the clue might be in our user names. I'm not too old to care. Had the people this boat is being prepared for got any of your title (common sense), they wouldn't be in the flippin river would they; and the boat wouldn't be needed! The very fact you feel we need a boat suggests to me that you can't educate pork. In my day we looked out for each other and would stop foolhardy attempts to swim the river etc. However none of us got that pi**ed that we were allowed to wander off alone and risk ending up in the drink. We got clattered yes, but we looked after each other, something that it would appear can not be said of some of those who have lost their lives. If this is moaning, then guilty as charged. I've done some silly things in my time, but I've never abandoned someone too pi**ed to know what they are doing. With regard to training the rescuers, can you confirm that the crew have received fast water flow /white water type training? My comment was not intended to be negative, it was expressing concern that this type of training would be essential. The RNLI underestimated this and it nearly cost them dearly, so much so they have improved their training for inland flood waters, and they are professional rescuers. The river Ouse can flow at rates in excess of 500 cumecs (cubic metres per second) through York. if they are appropriately trained then all's well and dandy. I might be wrong, but didn't most of those that lost their lives go in unnoticed? If that is/was the case, then the boat will not be used for rescue. It may sound harsh, and it might not be what you want to hear, but unless the message gets through and revellers take responsibility for themselves and each other, the press will be reporting on more preventable loss of life, boat or no boat. nottoooldtocare
  • Score: 9

4:00pm Sat 2 Aug 14

CommonSense!! says...

I agree people shouldn't be going into the river, but since they are surely it makes sense to do whatever possible to get them back out again intact?

I can't comment on the training, to the best of my knowledge a boat hasn't been acquired yet, but I would suggest any organisation which has gone to the lengths to organise themselves like York Rescue Boat obviously has will have a training programme in place.
I agree people shouldn't be going into the river, but since they are surely it makes sense to do whatever possible to get them back out again intact? I can't comment on the training, to the best of my knowledge a boat hasn't been acquired yet, but I would suggest any organisation which has gone to the lengths to organise themselves like York Rescue Boat obviously has will have a training programme in place. CommonSense!!
  • Score: 2

4:12pm Sat 2 Aug 14

Rockyrabbit says...

Absolutely agree with CommonSense's last post. Great to see Armstrong Massey involved. Have used them for nearly 20 years and they always provide an excellent and professional service. Keep up the good work everyone.
Absolutely agree with CommonSense's last post. Great to see Armstrong Massey involved. Have used them for nearly 20 years and they always provide an excellent and professional service. Keep up the good work everyone. Rockyrabbit
  • Score: 5

8:21pm Sat 2 Aug 14

spottycow says...

I think the more we make people aware the better but just wait for the IDIOTS.
I think the more we make people aware the better but just wait for the IDIOTS. spottycow
  • Score: 5

11:11am Sun 3 Aug 14

vax2002 says...

Binge drinking and Yorks total fascination with cut priced mid week binge drinking nights are where the real attention needs to be focussed.
One thing that connects all these victims is they were all severely intoxicated on cut price booze .
Binge drinking and Yorks total fascination with cut priced mid week binge drinking nights are where the real attention needs to be focussed. One thing that connects all these victims is they were all severely intoxicated on cut price booze . vax2002
  • Score: 1

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