Marine Museum. Belem, Portugal
Breeches Buoy rescue equipment
I have absolutely no idea how or why I had managed to label this as a "Fire Engine" *- insert red-faced smiley -*
Thanks to my husband for the following ...
This is a "Breeches Buoy" set.
There would have been small rockets in the boxes at the front, to fire thin rope lines across to a ship in distress.
Thicker lines would then be pulled across to the ship, these would be attached to a tree or rock on shore and to the ship's mast. They would have been tightened using a block and tackle, which would also be in one of the boxes.
The white cork ring has a pair of canvas 'breeches' beneath it and was suspended from the thick rope.
Thin ropes are attached to both sides of the ring, so people could be pulled to shore, and the life-buoy pulled back to the ship.
The megaphone is for shore to ship communication.
This series of archive pictures shows one in use
We have visitors until 15th April
Breaking the ice