Trapped couple rescued from rising tide near Tower Bridge by RNLI lifeboat

RNLI rescue lifeboat approaches stranded couple

RNLI rescue lifeboat approaches stranded couple - Credit: RNLI

Two tourists were rescued by lifeboat crew after being cut off by the fast-rising tide on the Thames foreshore near Tower Bridge.

Tower lifeboat crew lifts stranded woman aboard

Tower lifeboat crew lifts stranded woman aboard - Credit: RNLI

The tourists, a Polish man and woman, were walking along the exposed shoreline at Butler’s Wharf, opposite Wapping, when the fast-rising tide cut off their only route back to the footpath above.

The RNLI’s Tower lifeboat crew launched at 3pm on Saturday following a 999 call for help to the Coastguard.

“The two were stranded on just 3ft of the river bed that was still left exposed when we arrived,” lifeboat helmsman Stan Todd said.

“It would not have been long before the area was completely covered by the tide.


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“They were shocked at how fast the tide had risen and cut off their way back to the stairs up to the path.”

The couple, both in their 20s, were helped aboard the lifeboat, given lifejackets and taken back to Tower Pier.

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The emergency services get called out from time to time to rescue people cut off by the tide along the Thames, particularly in sunny weather, who don’t realise how fast the tide rises, the RNLI warns.

The voluntary organisation helped pluck 60 people to safety who were cut off by the tide at Chiswick while watching last month’s Oxford and Cambridge university boat race.

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