Swanage lifeboat crew aided by Poole inshore lifeboat rescue 40-foot yacht
Swanage all-weather lifeboat George Thomas Lacy was situated off Ballard point concluding a search with the Swanage inshore lifeboat when at 4.50pm the UK Coastguard received a Pan-Pan message from a yacht aground north of the East Looe channel near Poole harbour.
Swanage all-weather lifeboat was re-tasked to assist the 40-foot yacht leaving the inshore lifeboat to finish the search. Swanage lifeboat made best speed to the casualty vessels location. Once on scene it was apparent that due to the shallow nature of this area it would prove difficult to approach the yacht to pass the towline, so Poole inshore lifeboat was requested to assist in the rescue.
A RIB had arrived in response to the Pan-Pan and offered to assist in transferring a crew member and the tow line to the casualty vessel. A short while later at 5.16 pm the Swanage lifeboat started to tow the yacht making very slow progress. Poole volunteer lifeboat crew arrived on-scene shortly afterwards to assist.
With Poole inshore lifeboat towing from the side of the casualty vessel and Swanage all-weather lifeboat towing from the front the yacht was finally towed the short distance to deep water at 5.49pm
With the condition of the yacht unknown Swanage lifeboat towed the vessel into Poole harbour. The propulsion and steering were confirmed as OK by the owner which allowed the towline to be dropped. With the yacht under its own power and the Swanage volunteer crewman returned to the lifeboat the casualty vessel was then escorted the rest of the journey in Poole harbour by Poole inshore lifeboat
With Poole escorting the casualty the Swanage all-weather lifeboat was released to return to the station, returning shortly after 6.40pm where it was washed down, re-fuelled and made ready for service.
Deputy Coxswain Gavin Steeden said ‘The yacht did the right thing, they had lifejackets on and had the means to make the call for help early. It’s always good to work with the flanking station to assist with a rescue. It shows all the training we undertake together really pays off.’.
Key facts about the RNLI
The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around 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.