A VOLUNTEER crew member with the RNLI in Largs sprang into action yesterday with a young boy was spotted drifting precariously out to see on an inflatable LiLow.

The team were alerted to the incident when John Griffiths, the lifeboat operations manager was approached by a concerned member of the public and alerted the coastguard and his local crew.

One of them, Andrew Malone, swam out to the casualty as the rest of his crew tended to the safety line.

As the boy was brought closer to the nearby slipway, a second volunteer crew member entered the water to help bring him to the safety of the shore.

Lifeboat Helm, Neilson Grant – a trained paramedic – spoke with the father and the boy and, although a little shaken, he was safe and well.

Malone said: “When I got to the station, our operations manager, John, said it was a boy on an inflatable LiLow not far from our slipway. I got into my kit and swam out to the LiLow.

“Luckily the boy was still on the LiLow and not in the water, I got a hold of the inflatable and pulled it back to the slipway where Steve [another crew member] scooped the boy off and back to his dad who had watched the incident unfold from the slip.”

Griffiths praised the crew for their quick action, and reminded beachgoers about the danger of inflatables.

He said: “The quick thinking and actions of the volunteer crew averted a serious situation. Andrew was able to reach the boy before he came off the inflatable and the team were able to ensure both he and his father were OK.

“When there is any sort of wind, inflatables can be swept offshore in no time. We would advise against their use at the coast.”