A man was left stranded in a precarious position on Sunday 11 June, after he leapt into the Thames to save a dog that had fallen in.
A crew from the RNLI’s Tower lifeboat station, beneath Waterloo Bridge, were requested by the UK Coastguard just after 7.45pm, after reports of the situation came in.
Mick Nield, Tower RNLI lifeboat crew member, said, “As we neared Westminster Bridge we were given an update that, indeed, a member of the public had entered the river to try to help. We arrived on scene with the police boat and could see a man stood on the rescue chains attached to the Embankment wall.
“He was stood just above the waterline with the dog in his hands. The police boat crew were approaching the man to recover him but when they spotted the lifeboat they gestured to us to take over the rescue.”
The lifeboat was manoeuvred so the little dog could be handed over before the man stepped aboard. Remarkably, the good samaritan didn’t actually own the dog in distress – having left his own dog on the bank to rescue the pet of a stranger. Everyone was soon safely reunited.
“It appears the dog was let off its leash and without a thought leaped over the wall into the river,’ added Mick. ‘We were just glad both the man and the dog were OK. Both were very fortunate – whilst this was a brave act, the RNLI would not usually encourage people to go into rivers or the sea to save animals, as more often than not the person themselves can get into danger, further escalating the danger and the need for a rescue.
“The water can be very cold and, on such a busy stretch of the river there is a considerable amount of river traffic. The RNLI encourages anyone who sees someone in difficulty in the River Thames to call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.”
Seen the video in full here:
Featured image via RNLI/Tower