Leader seeks reassurance over search and rescue cover

 Plymouth’s Council leader has written to the Transport Minister asking for urgent reassurances over the future of Search and Rescue Services across the region.

Council leader Tudor Evans OBE said he was deeply concerned about the current financial difficulties facing the Bristow Group which runs the Maritime and Coastguard Search and Rescue contract.

In a letter to Secretary of State for Transport Chris Grayling MP, Councillor Evans said: “Every day thousands of residents and visitors to Plymouth use our waters for work or pleasure.

“I seek assurance that the Government will take the appropriate action to ensure that Plymouth, and all coastal communities will continue to see the same level of provision and that lives will not be put at risk.”

Bristow Group won the £1.6 billion contract in 2013 ending 70 years of Search and Rescue from the RAF and Royal Navy.

Department for Transport data shows the Search and Rescue helicopter based at Newquay was involved in 111 episodes over a three month period from July to September.