Kyle lifeboat launched to search for aircraft emergency beacon

Kyle RNLI lifeboat Spirit of Fred Olsen.

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A major search began after an aircraft emergency beacon was activated in the area around the Skye Bridge and Plock of Kyle.

Kyle lifeboat was launched along with Portree lifeboat, the UK Coastguard helicopter and multiple local Coastguard units on Wednesday May 1.

The volunteer crew from Kyle RNLI were alerted by the UK Coastguard shortly after 9.30am, after a signal was received from an aircraft emergency beacon in the local area. Kyle lifeboat Spirit of Fred Olsen launched at 9.38am and immediately began a search of the area around the Plock of Kyle and the Skye Bridge.

Portree lifeboat, the UK Coastguard helicopter from Stornoway and multiple Coastguard units from Kyle, Broadford and Portree all began a systematic search of the area and the surrounding coastline looking for any sign of an aircraft or beacon.

After completing a thorough search of the area, nothing was found, and at 11.55am the search was stood down. Kyle lifeboat returned to station and was refuelled and made ready for service by 12.15pm.

A Kyle RNLI spokesperson said: ‘Although this was the a false alarm, it shows the importance of having an emergency beacon onboard your vessel or aircraft, and the difference it can make in an emergency. Within minutes of the signal being received, the Coastguard were able to task multiple agencies to the scene to begin searching the area.’