Three Norfolk RNLI stations join forces on overnight tow of stricken yacht
At 9.32pm on Thursday 17 September, Sheringham ILB ‘The Oddfellows’ was tasked by Humber CG to go to the assistance of the 26-foot Yacht with 2 people on board.
The yacht had engine problems and was also taking on water through a fractured engine coolant pipe. Once the engine was stopped the Yacht stopped taking on water but lost all control. The Yacht was in position approx. ½ mile to sea off the Sheringham Golf links.
On arrival on scene the Inshore Lifeboat (ILB) was asked by the yacht skipper to be towed to a safe harbour. Although Wells harbour is closer, it was decided to tow the yacht towards Great Yarmouth which can be entered at any state of the tide where Wells harbour cannot.
Cromer’s All-weather lifeboat (ALB) ‘Lester’ arrived on scene at approximately 10.30pm and a transfer was made of crew members with one of Cromers crew to remain on the yacht. A crewman was put onto the yacht and secured the tow and they proceeded.With tow in place they went to Caister, arriving at approximately 5.00am on Friday. A second handover then took place with Great Yarmouth and Gorleston’s ALB ‘Samarbeta’,which completed the tow into Great Yarmouth.
ALB ‘Lester’ arrived at her home station at 05 05 but due to the swell did not get back inside until 08 00. By 09 11 refuelling, cleaning down etc had been completed.
Shaun Edwards, Area Lifesaving Manager for Norfolk, said ’This was an excellent example of the three stations, coordinated by Humber Coastguard, working together during a 9-hour operation, to achieve the successful outcome overnight. In addition to Sheringham, Cromer and Gt Yarmouth & Gorleston, Wells lifeboat station was also involved in the discussion as to the best course of action. A real team effort!’
Cromer Boat Crew
Cromer Shore Crew
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.