Peel RNLI Lifeboat crew battles challenging conditions to rescue sailors
Peel RNLI volunteers assisted two people aboard a yacht which had been blown onto the concrete groyne in Peel Bay and was being battered by high winds and rough seas early Sunday morning.
The Peel RNLI crew, aboard the all-weather lifeboat
Ruby Clery, was responding to a 7am request from the Isle of Man Coastguard. A 40-foot yacht, on route from the Shetland Islands to France, had been moored in the bay overnight. Its anchor dragged in the strong winds and with the propeller fouled by lines, the visiting sailors were unable to prevent it from running aground.
Frankie Horne, Coxswain with Peel RNLI, explained what happened next: ‘We faced very challenging conditions with Force 6 winds from the north east and low water hampering the lifeboat’s manoeuvrability. Once we were able to get a line on the yacht and pull it free, we towed it to the breakwater where it was safely tied up.
‘The visiting sailors were both wearing life jackets and had done everything they could, but conditions were against them. Although there was some damage to the yacht’s hull, both people were safe and well.
‘Our extensive training enabled the volunteer crew to work together effectively in these difficult circumstances.’
Training for RNLI crews is continuous, and Peel’s volunteers went out for a planned exercise once the rescued sailors were safely ashore.
Later in the day, when weather and tide conditions were more favourable, two lifeboat volunteers boarded the damaged yacht to assist as it was taken by the
Ruby Clery into the shelter of Peel Marina.
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, 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.