Ferry collision Leads to Lifeboat Search of Cowes Harbour

Lifeboats News Release

Cowes RNLI lifeboat, together with two RNLI lifeboats from Calshot, carried out a painstaking search of fog-bound Cowes Harbour this morning, after a Red Funnel car ferry was collided with a yacht before then going aground.

The Red Falcon, aground in the fog-bound harbour, as seen from Cowes.


The Red Falcon, aground in the fog-bound harbour, as seen from Cowes.

The ferry, the Red Falcon, which had left Southampton at 7 am, ran aground towards the east bank of the harbour, after, Red Funnel stated, it was ‘in collision with several small yachts’.

Joining the three lifeboats in a search were a Southampton Harbour launch and various other craft - with coastguard rescue teams from Bembridge, Ventnor and the Needles maintaining a watch from both sides of the harbour shore.

Cowes lifeboat, which launched at 8.30 am, returned to station at 11.15, 15 minutes after the ferry had been re-floated with the help of Southampton tugs. The tugs then assisted the ferry to its terminal at East Cowes, where MCA surveyors were to make an assessment of the vessel.

Regarding those aboard the Red Falcon, the MCA stated: “All passengers remain safe and well, and will disembark when the vessel is safely alongside.”

End Caption to photo.

The Red Falcon, aground in the fog-bound harbour, as seen from Cowes.


RNLI media contact

  • George Chastney, Cowes RNLI Volunteer Press Officer 07530 254052/ gwight37@googlemail.com
  • Paul Dunt, RNLI Regional Media Officer (London and South East) 0207 6207425/ 07785 296252/ Paul_Dunt@rnli.org.uk
For enquiries outside normal business hours, contact the RNLI duty press officer on 01202 336789

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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.

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