St Bees and Workington RNLI in joint rescue.

Lifeboats News Release

At 10:15 on 7 September the volunteers at St Bees RNLI were paged by H.M. Coastguard Belfast to go to the aid of a sailing vessel in difficulties three nautical miles west of Whitehaven Harbour

St Bees lifeboat approaching the casualty vessel

RNLI/Colin Wadey

Casualty located by St bees RNLI

The RNLI volunteers launched on Monday morning in challenging conditions to assist a sailing vessel that had engine problems on their approach to Whitehaven Marina. Volunteers from the neighbouring lifeboat station at Workington were also paged and launched their all-weather lifeboat.

Despite the worsening visibility the RNLI crew from St Bees quickly located the sailing boat. As soon as the volunteer crew had established that the yacht was not in any immediate danger and that the crew on board were all ok, the decision was made to remain with the vessel until the arrival of the larger lifeboat from Workington. With the arrival of the Shannon all-weather lifeboat, the latest in the RNLI fleet of lifeboats, it was decided the best course of action was for the Workington lifeboat crew to remain with the casualty vessel until the tide was high enough to allow them to tow the yacht safely into the marina. With the situation under control the smaller Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat then returned to St Bees to be refuelled, washed down and made ready for the next shout.


Workington lifeboat towing the yacht through the harbour locks

Whitehaven Sailing and Boating Association

Towed in the marina by Workington RNLI

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.

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