RNLI Redcar recently captured some excellent footage of their Atlantic 85 lifeboat, ‘Leicester Challenge III’, in launch and recovery with the Talus MB4H tractor.
The helm would normally reverse the lifeboat into the carriage for recovery, but in rough conditions like those seen here, a ‘net recovery’ is used. The net catches the lifeboat while the crew members place harnesses on the cage so that the boat is not left behind when the tractor moves forward.
The carriage can then be lifted and rotated 180 degrees so that they are ready to relaunch in just minutes.
This year marks 100 years since the first tractor was used to pull a lifeboat, though it took a little while to be fully adopted, with the last horse-drawn lifeboat launching in 1936!