St Abbs Lifeboat Thomas Tunnock

In 2015 the RNLI announced that they would be closing the St Abbs lifeboat station. The RNLI believed that there was “not a clear need” for a lifeboat in St Abbs, despite rescues like the ones reported here. There was a substantial campaign for the RNLI to reverse its decision and keep the Station open as part of the RNLI family. However on the 8th September 2015, the RNLI withdrew their lifeboat.

The villagers of St Abbs held a public meeting and decided that they should start fundraising to set up their own independent lifeboat station. One of the fundraisers contacted Sir Boyd Tunnock, and thanks to his generosity, the village purchased its first independent lifeboat.

The lifeboat was officially launched on 17th September 2016. It is named the Thomas Tunnock, named after Sir Boyd Tunnock’s late father and late brother. Thomas Tunnock is an 900W Rigid Inflatable Boat built by Marine Specialised Technology Ltd. based in Liverpool. She has a maximum speed of 47 knots and is one of the fastest lifeboats in the UK. She carries a crew of four and has capacity for twelve casualties.

Technical details:

  • Length LOA: 9 metres
  • Beam BOA: 3.05 metres
  • Beam internal: 1.95 metres
  • Draught: 0.7 metres or 1 metres to base of skegs at 100% fuel and 4 pax
  • Displacement approx.: 2600kg
  • Maximum speed: 47 kts
  • Fual capacity: 2 x 150 litres
  • Range approx.: 150 nautical miles (173 miles or 278 km)
  • Construction: Polyester Glass Reinforced Resin (GPR) construction using GRP protected marine ply under deck structure.
  • Engines: Twin OBM Mercury Optimax 200 HP units modified with PIRS (Post Immersion Restart System)

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