Sunderland sandwich delivery man takes to the seas as a lifeboat volunteer

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FROM delivering sandwiches to saving lives, Jonny Lindsley is launching a new career as a lifeboat volunteer.

The 22-year-old, from High Barnes, Sunderland, has taken to the waves for the first time as a crewman with Sunderland RNLI.

Jonny, who works as a delivery driver with The Sandwich Company, said: “It was great to get the opportunity to put the skills I have learnt over the last few months into practice for real.”

Jonny, who initially joined the charity as a member of the shore-based crew which help launch and recover lifeboats, boarded the Atlantic 85 inshore vessel for the rescue operation.

It followed intense training and assessments, which ensures volunteers are able to carry out rescue in operations in all weather conditions.

“The training I have received so far has given me the confidence to work alongside other crew members and start to learn some of the more advanced skills required to become a fully-fledged member,” said Jonny.

Jonny, who replaces volunteer Chris Lees after his switch to inshore lifeboat mechanic, said his first rescue operation went well.

He plans to balance his RNLI commitments with his full-time job.

“The Humber Coastguard requested the launch of the station’s two inshore lifeboats after they received a 999 call from a member of the public concerned that they had lost sight of a swimmer off Seaburn beach,” he said.

“After carrying out a complete search of the coastline, up to half-a-mile offshore, the coastguard were happy that there was no one missing in the area.

“Investigations on the shore also confirmed that no one was missing.”

All of the training costs for Sunderland RNLI lifeboat station during 2012 are being offset by a £15,000 donation from Newcastle-based North of England P&I Association.

The marine mutual liability insurer provides protection and indemnity, war risks and defence cover to more than 6,000 ships worldwide.

Twitter: @SunderlandEcho