HC Deb 25 January 1982 vol 16 c263W
Mr. Prescott

asked the Secretary of State for Trade how many lives have been saved by the air, sea search and rescue services for each year since 1970, divided between lifeboat and helicopter rescues.

Mr. Sproat

It is often a matter of judgment whether a life has been saved by rescue services. Persons who are assisted when they are in danger may be at imminent risk of their lives, but none the less may survive against all expectations. Others will be in less extreme circumstances, but will be unlucky. The number of persons who appeared to be in immediate danger of death at the time they were rescued by lifeboats of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution and helicopters of the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force in civil incidents off the coasts of the United Kingdom, in the years since 1977, was as follows:

1977 1978 1979 1980 1981
Lifeboats 1, 087 883 944 1, 191 *980
Helicopters 212 207 258 332 287

Figures for earlier years could not be produced, except at disproportionate cost.

Mr. Prescott

asked the Secretary of State for Trade how many vessels have been aided by rescue services co-ordinated by the coastguard for each year since 1975; and what were their flags of registration.

Mr. Sproat

The numbers of vessels of all descriptions assisted by the rescue services co-ordinated by Her Majesty's coastguard for each year from 1977 are as follows:

1977 1, 848
1978 1, 542
1979 1, 736
1980 1, 847
1981 1, 704

Information on vessels assisted prior to 1977 and the flags of registration of all vessels assisted is not on the computerised records and is not available save at disproportionate cost.