New Quay RNLI rescues distressed yacht in rough conditions

Lifeboats News Release

New Quay RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat was called out in the early hours of Saturday 4 May to rescue a motor yacht in distress in Cardigan Bay, in rough sea conditions.

New Quay RNLI rescues distressed yacht in rough conditions


The yacht is brought under tow

On Saturday 4 May at 00.50 the relief Mersey class all-weather lifeboat, Bingo Lifeline, was requested to launch by HM Coastguard to aid a 36 foot motor yacht, 24 nautical miles from New Quay.

The yacht, with four persons on board, which was on passage from Beaumaris to Milford Haven, had lost hydraulic power to the steering and was drifting at a speed of 3.2 knots in Cardigan Bay.

The lifeboat launched at 01.00 with seven volunteer crew members on board, in a force 6 to 7 north westerly wind. Due to the bad weather conditions, there were also concerns for the wellbeing of two of the yacht’s crew, who were suffering from severe sea sickness.

After an hour and half steaming through the rough conditions, the lifeboat crew located the vessel and put a crew member on board to assess the situation. The lifeboat then began towing the vessel, with the casualty drogue deployed to prevent broaching in the heavy following sea.

Daniel Potter, New Quay RNLI’s Coxswain said, “The conditions were pretty bad out there. We had been steaming through large waves to get to the casualty and, when we arrived on scene, we could see the yacht rolling violently. We passed over a sea anchor to get them head to wind and then put one of our crew on board, which was fairly challenging in the conditions.

“We were then able to assess the condition of the casualties and begin the long journey back to New Quay. With the help of our inshore lifeboat we moored the casualty vessel alongside the pier.”

Roger Couch, New Quay RNLI’s Lifeboat Operations Manager emphasised the severity of the situation, “The weather conditions were extremely dangerous, and the state of the occupants was of great concern. It was imperative that the lifeboat reached them as soon as possible as the disabled yacht was drifting at the mercy of the weather.

“After securing the casualty vessel in New Quay harbour, and with everyone safe and well, both lifeboats returned to station by 07.30. It was a very long night for the crew and the casualties were extremely grateful.”

Around 150 people still lose their lives in UK and Irish waters annually. The RNLI provides a 24/7 search and rescue service around the UK and Ireland, and relies on volunteers to help save lives at sea.

Notes to editors

For more information contact Kate Williams, New Quay Lifeboat Press Officer at or 07786 550054. Alternatively contact Eleri Roberts, RNLI Media Officer on 01745 585162 / 07771 941390.

RNLI/Simon Rigby

The yacht with New Quay RNLI's inshore lifeboat in New Quay harbour

RNLI/Huw Williams

Casaulty vessel safely moored in New Quay harbour

RNLI/Chris Morse

New Quay RNLI's relief lifeboat Bingo Lifeline being recovered on New Quay beach

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 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.

Learn more about the RNLI

For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.