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D Class (IB1) Lifeboats

First introduced into the RNLI fleet in 1963, the design of the inflatable D class lifeboat continues to evolve to meet changes in demand and technology. The current version the IB1 was introduced in 2003.

These fast, light inflatable boats are suited to shallow water and confined locations such as close to cliffs, among rocks or even in caves.These craft can reach casualties in places where an all-weather lifeboat would be unable to operate.

The D class has a single 50hp outboard engine and can be righted manually by the crew after a capsize. Equipment includes both fitted and hand-held VHF radio, night-vision equipment, and first aid kit including oxygen.

All RNLI inshore lifeboats are built and maintained at the Inshore Lifeboat Centre (ILC) in Cowes, Isle of Wight. A D class lifeboat is generally refitted every 2 years. This process sees the entire lifeboat stripped and rebuilt with any part found to be worn, torn or broken being repaired or replaced.

D Class Facts

  • Introduced: 1963 (Latest version 2003)
  • Length: 5m
  • Width: 2m
  • Load: 400kg
  • Launch Type: Trolley or davit
  • Fuel Capacity: 68 litres
  • Crew: 2-3
  • Range: 3 hours at maxium speed
  • Engines: 1 x mariner at 40 or 50hp

The table below contains information on D Class lifeboats currently based at RNLI stations in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

Lifeboats listed in YELLOW are under construction. Lifeboats listed in BLACK are in service.

Note: Table below will contain details of all D Class (IB1) production craft. This a work in progress. Any further information will be welcomed.

D-603C and D-601C are pictured in the RNLI Survival Centre in Poole. Photo: RNLI

Former Wexford Lifeboat D-644 Phillip Robert Booth. Photo: RNLI/Wexford

Former Wicklow ILB D-671 Sheringham Shanty Men. Photo: RNLI/Tommy Dover

Former Penarth ILB D-692 Connie Dains. Photo: RNLI/Penarth

Former Portsmouth ILB D-716 Brian's Pride. Photo: RNLI/Portsmouth

Former Campbeltown ILB D-737 Alastair Greenlees. Photo: RNLI/Campbeltown

Sennen Cove ILB D-763 Amy Brown. Photo: RNLI/Sennen Cove

Holyhead ILB D-791 Mary & Archie Hooper. Photo: RNLI/Holyhead

Fowey ILB D-817 Olive Three. Photo: RNLI/Fowey

Minehead ILB D-847 Exmoor Belle. Photo: RNLI/Minehead

Blackpool ILB D-862 Phyllis Rowan. Photo: RNLI/Blackpool

Lifeboats listed in YELLOW are under construction. Lifeboats listed in BLACK are in service.

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