Causeway for concern

Another rescue has been made from Holy Island causeway

The RNLI’s Seahouses lifeboat has been launched to rescue a car stranded on the Holy Island causeway in Northumberland – for the 10th time this year.

Despite the best efforst of the crew, the Cumbrian couple had to be airlifted to safety by an RAF helicopter after becoming stranded. Since 2000 the lifeboat crew have rescued more than 170 people from the causeway.

The problem arises when drivers ignore the safe-crossing times posted at either end of the tidal causeway and attempt to beat the tides by driving across.

Mike Scott, head of sustainable transport at Northumberland County Council, said: “Invitations are being issued this week to council officers, elected members, the RNLI and other interested parties to meet to consider all possible options for motorists using the causeway, including those that have previously been identified, such as smart signs.

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“Funding could be made available for a new sign system, or other option, provided we can demonstrate that the investment will have tangible benefits.”

There is no guarantee that new signage would solve the problem, however. Scott told the Berwick Advertiser: “There are already numerous signs warning motorists of dangers on the causeway, which a tiny minority of motorists simply ignore.

“If we are to add further signs, we need to be assured that they will not also be ignored by those people who appear to think that tide tables do not apply to them.”


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