Disabled yacht towed to safety by Margate RNLI

Lifeboats News Release

Margate RNLI has provided assistance to a yacht with two persons on board in difficulties off the north Kent Coast.

Photo of the Margate RNLI all-weather lifeboat 'Leonard Kent, outside the lifeboat station.

RNLI Margate

The Margate RNLI all-weather lifeboat 'Leonard Kent, outside the lifeboat station.

UK Coastguard received a mobile phone call around 10am today (Friday 24 July) from the occupants of a 21’ yacht on passage from the river Medway to Folkestone stating they were around a mile off Reculver Towers, around seven miles west of Margate and had run aground. There were two persons on board and they were requesting assistance. Communications were hampered by a low battery on their mobile phone.

Margate RNLI was alerted, and the town’s all-weather lifeboat was tasked to the incident. The casualty vessel was located around two miles north of Reculver Towers and while it had refloated safely was disabled by a flat engine battery.

After establishing the two occupants were safe and well the craft was taken in tow, the convoy arriving in the safety of Ramsgate harbour three hours later.

Peter Barker, Deputy Launching Authority, Margate RNLI said: ‘We urge anyone with a small craft to invest in a marine VHF radio. Mobile phones soon lose signal strength offshore and may have limited battery life. Your request for assistance on VHF will be heard by other craft as well of course the coastguard. SAR units are able to ‘home in’ on marine VHF signals making locating casualty vessels a lot quicker which in distress situations could be crucial.’

ENDS

RNLI Media contacts

· Peter Barker, RNLI Margate Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer 07974 064304 peter_barker@rnli.org.uk

· Paul Dunt, Regional Media Officer (SouthEast), 0207 6207416, 07786 668825 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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