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Royal National Lifeboat Institution

Scania UK and the RNLI join forces to become partners

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) celebrated 200 years of lifesaving in 2024, and with our own 60th anniversary, we made 2024 a year to remember by joining forces with an organization that shares our values and puts people at the heart of everything it does.


Scania UK and the RNLI have agreed a multi-year partnership, which builds on the longstanding existing relationship, to help the RNLI continue to save lives at sea.


We will support the RNLI through fundraising activities across our network, and will continue to support the RNLI’s vehicles, which use our Power Solutions engines. These include the RNLI’s Shannon Class all-weather lifeboat and the Shannon Launch and Recovery System (SLARS).

Key facts about the RNLI

The RNLI is the charity that saves lives at sea. Their volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service at 238 lifeboat stations around the UK and Ireland. The RNLI also operates a seasonal lifeguard services on 240 beaches in the UK and Channel Islands.


The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.

Scania Family

In celebration of our partnership with the RNLI we visited the RNLI College in Poole to see how they put our engines to the test and ensure they meet the institution’s expectations. Discover why Scania stands out as the top choice for their life-saving Shannon vessels and their crew.

Scania and the RNLI

Shannon class lifeboat

The Shannon is the latest class of all-weather lifeboat to join the RNLI fleet. It's the first modern all-weather lifeboat to be propelled by waterjets instead of traditional propellers, making it their most agile and manoeuvrable all-weather lifeboat yet.


Designed by a team of RNLI engineers, the RNLI harnessed cutting-edge technology to ensure this new lifeboat meets the demands of a 21st century rescue service, building on systems developed for her big sister, the Tamar class lifeboat.


The Shannon lifeboat was designed to be launched and recovered from a beach via a new faster and safer launch and recovery system and can also be launched from a slipway or lie afloat.


Complete with two of our Scania 13-litre DC13 inline 6 cylinder turbocharged and intercooled 650hp engines.


The naming of the Shannon class lifeboat follows a tradition of naming lifeboats after rivers. But it's the first time an Irish river has been chosen. The River Shannon is 240 miles in length and is the longest river in Ireland.

Shannon launch and recovery system (SLARS)

The Shannon launch and recovery system (SLARS) acts like a mobile slipway for the Shannon, which can be driven directly onto the beach for recovery, making both ideal for lifeboat stations without harbours, slipways or davit systems.


Complete with our Scania 13-litre DC13 inline 6 cylinder turbocharged 450hp engine. Weighing in at 37 tonnes, it can carry an 18-tonne Shannon over different beach terrain, from steep shelving shingle to wet, sticky sand.


It can safely launch the Shannon in up to 2.4m of water. In the event of breakdown with an incoming tide, the watertight tractor can be completely submerged in depths of up to 9m before being retrieved once the tide has receded.


In calm conditions, the tractor doesn’t have to get wet. Its hydraulic carriage tilts 7 degrees downwards, allowing the lifeboat to run down the slope into the water.

A quick word from our Managing Director...

“We recognise the importance of the RNLI’s work keeping people safe at sea, which is why it’s a privilege to partner with such an organisation.


“To celebrate your bicentenary is some achievement, and at Scania, we can play our part in helping the RNLI save lives for another 200 years, through fundraising and continued support.


“Our shared values and ability to bring people together is what makes this such a great partnership.”


 - Chris Newett, Managing Director Scania UK

How you can help

Your donations really make a difference. The RNLI depends on your generosity to educate people to stay safe and prevent tragedies on and offshore.

Find out more

The RNLI volunteer lifeboat crews are ready to launch 24/7. With 238 lifeboat stations around the coasts of the UK and Ireland, the RNLI has created a ring of safety to help protect and save those in peril at sea. 

Learn about the RNLI

24 hours a day, seven days a week, the RNLI is ready to save lives. Powered by courage and determination.

Read our press release

Read our announcement that came on the day that the RNLI commemorated 200 years since it was founded, during our 60th year celebrations.