The RNLI has created an innovative solution to tackle tidal cut off after 428 incidents in 2013 alone
The RNLI have devised an innovative traffic light system, which uses a tide gauge to indicate when it’s safest to cross a causeway.
The new technology is being trialled at Sully Island in Penarth, Wales.
The RNLI’s coastal safety team came up with the pioneering warning system after volunteers were regularly being called to assist people cut off by the tide.
Last year alone saw the charity respond to 428 incidents across the UK and resulted in 109 lives being saved.
Penarth is just one of many areas popular with walkers and families who can regularly find themselves stranded due to the tide.
The RNLI are hoping that this new system will reduce the number of incidents and help to prevent future life threatening situations.
RNLI community incident reduction manager Nicola Davies, said: “The sign is a pilot and has not been tested anywhere else in the UK. Sully Island is the perfect place for it to be tested as we are seeing regular incidents involving people cut off by the ride, resulting in call outs for Penarth RNLI.
“By observing the sign, visitors don’t have to second guess how much time they have and know exactly when it is safe to cross.
“Whilst RNLI volunteer crews are trained and ready to put to sea when people need help, we are keen to educate the public about potential hazards, so they are well aware of the dangers and don’t require assistance from the RNLI.”
The sign works by indicating three phases, when it’s safe to cross (green), when time is running out (yellow) and when it’s unsafe to cross (red).
The tide gauge is able to sense how quickly the water is coming in, allowing the sign to provide a countdown as to how much time is left on the causeway when in the yellow phase.
If the pilot is deemed a success then there is the potential that the new system will be rolled out to other problematic areas of the UK.