Kannad Marine supports 9:9:9 Coastal Challenge in support of UK firefighters and New York 9/11 victims

999 Rib ChallengeKannad Marine has pledged its support for a team of firefighters from Manchester, UK, which is planning to circumnavigate the British coastline by Rigid Inflatable Boat (RIB) in 9 days, 9 hours and 9 minutes. Kannad Marine will supply six SafeLink SOLO Personal Locator Beacons (PLBs) to the team, who are undertaking the challenge to raise money for the Firefighter’s Charity and the Fire Department New York Association Fund on the tenth anniversary of the World Trade Center terrorist attacks.

 

The challenge will start at 0700 on 10th September 2011 from Southampton, with the first leg being a gruelling 250 mile stretch to Padstow. From there the team will travel around the British mainland, completing the challenge with a final leg from Ramsgate to Southampton on 18th September.

Facing some tough offshore passages in their 6.3m RIB, the team are pleased to have the support of Kannad Marine. Team member, Mark Wilson, an officer with the Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service, comments; “We are fully aware that should anything go wrong, we would be on our own, and at times out of handheld VHF range. Kannad Marine’s SOLO PLBs will provide a safety net should the worst case scenario happen and a crew member falls overboard.”
Kannad Marine’s SOLO PLB can be used to alert the emergency services no matter where the user is in the world. It operates on the international 406 MHz distress signal which is monitored 24/7 by the global COSPAS SARSAT satellite communication network. This compact and lightweight beacon also has an in-built 50 channel GPS receiver, enabling search and rescue services to pinpoint the PLBs precise location and carry out an effective rescue.

The 9:9:9 Coastal Challenge has already been endorsed by well-known adventurer Bear Grylls, who says; “This is a great challenge for an incredible charity that saves lives all year round. I admire the team’s courage so much.”
The team are expecting to encounter some rough seas, particularly around the exposed Scottish coastline. As one of two experienced Royal Yachting Association (RYA) Powerboat Instructors taking part in the challenge, Mark Wilson will be joined by six other operational firefighters, a recently retired fire officer plus two members of the service’s non-operational support staff. None of the 10-strong team has attempted a challenge of this sort before.

As part of the Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service, the team members are all very aware of the excellent work undertaken by the Firefighter’s Charity, which supports injured firefighters through its rehabilitation programme. The Charity has been instrumental in helping a fellow member of the service, one of the team’s colleagues, who received 50% burns whilst attempting to save a family from a burning flat in Bolton in 2009.
A radio presenter from GMG Radio Group will also join the crew onboard, broadcasting daily reports, and a web-linked tracking device will also be fitted onboard the RIB. To follow the team’s progress during the challenge, visit www.realradionorthwest.co.uk