RNLI reveals new lifeboat design
The new 'Shannon' class lifeboat will serve in the RNLI's relief fleet once trials have been completed
The RNLI has revealed its new ‘Shannon’ class lifeboat design, the first modern all-weather lifeboat to be powered by water jets instead of propellers.
The new Shannon class, which can reach speeds of up to 25 knots and is 50% faster than the vessels it will be replacing, will make up about a third of the lifeboat fleet. Powered by waterjets, it has better manoeuvrability, making it easier to move alongside damaged boats or people in the water.
Its advanced hull shape allows the vessel to maintain a speed of 20 knots in the most adverse weather conditions. In addition, its shock absorbing seats and SIMS computer monitoring and operating system improves the safety and efficiency of the volunteer crew.
Paul Boissier, chief executive, RNLI, said: “The Shannon class has been carefully developed by our in-house team of naval architects, marine engineers and operators with the safety of the volunteer crews at the very heart of the design.”
He added: “The roll out of the Shannon will complete our charity’s aim of having a fleet capable of at least 25-knots; we will be able to ‘get there faster’ for everyone, no matter where you are around the UK and Ireland.”
The first boat, which is still undergoing trials around the coast of the UK, will serve in the relief fleet once completed.
Images for this article - click to enlarge
Unless otherwise stated, all images copyright © Mercator Media 2013. This does not exclude the owner's assertion of copyright over the material.