Search and Rescue Team
VLB Rescue Officers have the mental capacity, strength, and endurance to function for at least 30 minutes in heavy seas and on rugged terrain during adverse weather conditions.
Our team of 15 officers are able to respond to emergencies as directed by Humber Coastguard and is on call round-the-clock 365 days a year. The team is currently undergoing training towards getting Declared Facility status.
All of our team members are qualified in first aid.
The Coastwatch Team provides a visual watch on the sea, coastline, piers and harbour. Using their ‘eyes and ears’ to monitor the local area, the Watch Keepers maintain a log of all craft movements, provide weather reports and observe activities such as water sports. They are able to spot and report incidents as they happen. This improves response times from the emergency services and also improves safety for all who use the area. The Coastwatch is currently in operation four days a week and there are plans to extend to seven as more people are trained. Sunderland Coastwatch is a member of the Sea Safety Group. The Sea Safety Group is a nationwide organisation that ensures a high standard of watchkeeping is maintained and has a direct link to H.M. Coastguard.
The Lookout is equipped with radar, radios, weather station, charts, telescope and binoculars.
Watch House Museum
The Roker Watch House is not only the headquarters of the Brigade as it also holds a wealth of information on its work and the rescues it has carried out over the past 130 years. As well as the many photographs on display, there are artifacts from some of the ships wrecked off the coast and a variety of examples of rescue equipment used by the Brigade. At present, the Watch House is closed to the public but we intend to open at least one day of each week during the Summer months. Entry is free and light refreshments can be purchased for a small charge. It is a very interesting visit for anyone interested in local or maritime history.
This team includes members from the other three teams as well as people who concentrate solely on fundraising. As the Brigade is fully self supporting it relies on collections, donations and grants to raise the funds necessary to provide all of the rescue and safety equipment, Coastwatch equipment, the emergency vehicle and maintain the Watch House. Without the dedication of this team the work of the Brigade could not continue, it is vital to every aspect of what can be achieved.
The Search & Rescue vehicle.
Watchkeepers in the lookout.
Art exhibition in the museum.