RNLI closes South Broads lifeboat station at Oulton Broad

The South Broads lifeboat station at Oulton Broad has been closed by the Royal National Lifeboat Institute (RNLI).

The rescue charity said public safety would be better served by relocating the inshore station's equipment.

Great Yarmouth & Gorleston is getting an Arancia lifeboat to help cover the South Broads area.

The closure was one of the recommendations of the RNLI's coast review of January 2011.

Michael Vlasto, operations director for the RNLI, said: "The RNLI does not take the decision to close a lifeboat station lightly, but by reinforcing Great Yarmouth & Gorleston, and by introducing the Arancia, the RNLI can improve its lifesaving service to the public.

"The main launch sites are more accessible meaning we can extend our cover to a much wider area in the Broads."

'Commitment and dedication'

The RNLI said its volunteers had carried out 194 rescues and saved two lives since the South Broads station opened in 2001.

The station's D-class lifeboat and XP boat have been transferred to the RNLI's relief fleet, which, in turn, has provided the Arancia for Great Yarmouth.

A 4x4 road vehicle from the South Broads has been moved to Great Yarmouth.

Andrew Ashton, east divisional inspector for the RNLI, said: "I would like to thank the volunteers at South Broads for their understanding, commitment and dedication.

"We hope they will remain in the RNLI family and continue to support our service in other ways."

The Lowestoft lifeboat station is unaffected by the decision.

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