London: Prince William has successfully completed his first air-sea rescue mission with the RAF.
He was part of an offshore operation off Cumbria to help a stricken oil-rig worker.
The Prince was co-pilot of a four-man crew aboard an RAF Sea King helicopter that was scrambled to an offshore oil rig in Morecambe Bay at 2.11 pm.
The crew of “Rescue 122” was called to reports of a man who had suffered a heart attack on an accommodation rig next to a gas production platform.
They left their base at RAF Valley in Anglesey, Wales, just seven minutes after the emergency call for assistance was made by Liverpool Coastguard and landed on the platform 24 minutes later.
The ill man was quickly assessed by the RAF Winchman before Prince William and his team successfully transferred him over water to a helicopter landing site just a short 10-minute flight away, from where he was taken to Blackpool Victoria hospital by ambulance.
“Prince William is pleased finally to be able to contribute to the life-saving work of the Search and Rescue Force,” the Telegraph quoted a spokesman for the Prince as saying.
“He is proud, after two years of intense training, to be able to serve in one of Britain’s foremost emergency services,” the spokesman added.
A source close to the Prince said: "After spending so long in training, he is very happy to be cracking on with the job and to be part of such an important team."