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Ballycotton RNLI in 10 hour call out to yacht 84 miles off Cork coast

Lifeboats News Release

Ballycotton RNLI launched their all-weather yesterday afternoon (Wednesday 9 August) at approximately 1pm to aid a yacht in difficulty approximately 84 miles south of Ballycotton.

The yacht with 10 people onboard was returning from the Fastnet offshore yacht race when the vessel lost its rudder and was unable to steer. The resulting support by Ballycotton RNLI saw the volunteer lifeboat crew on service for over 10 hours, eventually returning home to Ballycotton shortly after 11.30pm last night.

St. Mary’s lifeboat from the Scilly Islands was also requested to launch and was first to arrive on scene at 4.15pm yesterday afternoon, shortly followed by the Ballycotton all-weather lifeboat at 4.45pm.

St. Mary’s lifeboat put the yacht, namely the Vencom under tow and began to take the vessel back ashore to the Isle of Scilly. The yacht was manoeuvring violently while under tow and was unable to hold a straight line behind the lifeboat which then required assistance from the Ballycotton lifeboat crew. Ballycotton agreed to pass a casualty drogue to the yacht which enabled it to remain in a towable position and under control.

Once it was confirmed that the casualty vessel and St. Mary’s lifeboat were safe and in a stable towing position, Ballycotton lifeboat was then advised to return home.

Commenting on the call out Ballycotton RNLI Coxswain Eolan Walsh said: ‘This was the furthest offshore rescue that I personally have ever been requested to and it was a pleasure to be able to assist the crew of the Vencom. We would like to commend both the crew members onboard the yacht who were all wearing suitable lifejackets and also thank the crew on board the St. Mary's lifeboat for their efforts in ensuring a positive outcome for all involved. I would also like to thank my volunteer crew who despite a very long and tiring launch remained focussed on bringing everyone home safely. ’

Ends

RNLI media contacts

For more information please contact Michelle Scanlon Ballycotton RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer Tel: 086 352 8919 email: mellsca@hotmail.com or Niamh Stephenson RNLI Public Relations Manager Tel: 087 1254 124 / 01 8900 460 email Niamh_Stephenson@rnli.org or Nuala McAloon RNLI Press Officer Tel: 087 6483547 email: Nuala_McAloon@rnli.org

RNLI/Ballycotton

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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.

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