Mum dies trying to rescue dog from River Mersey


A mum tragically drowned after trying to save her dog in the River Mersey, an inquest heard.

Christine Robinson, 57, from Eastham, Wirral, was walking her pet dog with her son Niall in New Brighton along King’s Parade on Monday, July 6 2020. But things took a turn for the worse when the dog was swept into the River Mersey while on a slipway, prompting Christine and Niall to try and reach the pet.

Both Christine and Niall quickly got caught up in the water and emergency services quickly initiated a major rescue operation involving the RNLI, Coastguard, Merseyside Police and North West Ambulance Service. Unfortunately, they were unable to save Ms Robinson and she was pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics, the Liverpool Echo reports.

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An inquest into her death was held at Liverpool coroners’ court on Wednesday (April 20), where operations manager at Holyhead Coastguard, Richard Jones, was asked about the three-minute gap between the emergency call coming in, and a rescue crew being designated to the job.

Joseph Hart, assistant coroner for Liverpool and Wirral, noted that “Three minutes is a long time.” Mr Jones was assigned to the New Brighton inshore lifeboat to help tackle the incident. Despite this, the crew had already launched and were well on their way to the scene before they were even alerted by the coastguard.

Mr Jones explained that there were a variety of reasons for the three-minute delay, such as dealing with other incoming calls, “grading” the incident as well as analysing the information related to it, such as weather conditions.

He said: “I’m trying to understand what’s happening in those three minutes. There are a number of assessments that have to be made before you send in ‘an asset’ to try and effect a rescue.” At the time, a number of other rescue vessels were available such as a Marine Fire 1 boat owned by Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service which was based at the Pier Head landing stage and operated by a full-time three-man crew.

Mr Robinson’s body was recovered from rocks around 100 yards away from New Brighton promenade and she was tragically pronounced dead at the scene. In the wake of her death, her family made a heartfelt tribute where she was described as a “kind-hearted” person who had “a positive impact on every person’s life”.

Originally from the North East, the mum of two was working as a pharmacy technician for Boots in Chester at the time of her death.


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