At 1400 hours on Wednesday 20th April, 2016 Belfast Coastguard contacted Helensburgh RNLI Lifeboat to advise that there was a 44' yacht aground at the mouth of the River Leven.
Although the tide was on the ebb, the Coastguard requested that the lifeboat attend to establish the situation on board the vessel. The lifeboat was launched and proceeded to the location.The crew located the yacht hard aground on a sand bank some 10 metres outside the channel (which is not buoyed). As the yacht could not be refloated at that time, it was agreed that a crew would return later in the evening to confirm that the yacht refloated safely. The lifeboat crew landed one of the yacht's crew plus two dogs at Sandpoint Marina before returning to base. A second crew was selected to go out later in the evening.
At 0010 hours, the lifeboat crew launched again and proceeded to Dumbarton in time to confirm that the yacht had refloated safely; it was the intention of the yacht's crew to continue their passage to Kip marina. Having confirmed that all was well, the lifeboat crew returned to base and reported ready for service again at 0120 hours.
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.