Swanage lifeboat tasked to Mayday on the May Day bank holiday during crew BBQ
As the sausages were just about to be served the pagers sounded at 12:50pm with a request to launch to a Mayday distress call.
Deputy Coxswain Gavin Steeden said “The yacht was well prepared and took the correct steps to call for assistance. We quickly established that it was not possible to stop the water ingress at sea and therefore getting the yacht to a safe haven to be lifted was essential. The fair weather also provided a good opportunity to take one of our newer crew, Richard Lloyd on his first shout to enhance his ongoing training”.
With the immediate danger on hold the crew were able to make a more detailed assessment of the situation and to try to find the cause of the problem. Attempts at a resolving the problem facing the casualty vessel were made, but it was not possible to stop the water ingress whilst the boat was at sea, therefore the only remaining option was to arrange for the vessel to be lifted from the water.
The nearest place for such an operation was Poole Yacht Club, in Poole Harbour and arrangements were made to take the casualty vessel under tow by the Shannon Lifeboat, with the two volunteer crew members remaining onboard the yacht to manage the ingress of water with the salvage pump.
The lifeboat from the flanking RNLI station, Poole, came out to meet the Swanage lifeboat as they approached Poole Harbour to take over the tow. With the tow handed over just off Brownsea Island Swanage lifeboat was release to return to return to station.
Notes to Editors
Photo - Shannon alongside casualty vessel, credit RNLI
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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, in a normal year, 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.