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Selsey RNLI responds to emergency Pan call from yacht taking water

Lifeboats News Release

The UK Coastguards requested the immediate launch of the all-weather lifeboat after receiving a Pan emergency call from a yacht with two persons on board. The skipper reported they were 2 miles southwest of Selsey Bill taking water and required assistance.

RNLI/Max Gilligan

Selsey lifeboat towing the yacht

The Selsey all-weather lifeboat (ALB) launched at 2.35pm on Sunday 4th July and made best speed to the yachts position between the Buoys that mark the Looe channel gate. They were experiencing rough conditions with strong tides combined with the fresh winds. The weather on scene was wind west southwest force 5-6 gusting 7, sea state moderate in bright sky.

Whist the lifeboat was on route the skipper reported his engine had failed. The ALB arrived on scene at 2.46pm and after a short time managed to transfer a crewman to the yacht to make an assessment. The crewman reported the yacht needed towing straight away clear of the rougher water, so a line was passed, and a tow was quickly established, however soon after the tow started, he reported the ingress of water appeared to be increasing and was around the engine, so the pump was required straight away. With the yacht now clear of the rougher conditions the tow was dropped and preparations made to transfer the pump.

The coxswain decided it would be best if both the persons on the yacht should be taken on to the lifeboat for their safety so when the ALB manoeuvred alongside the vessel one person was successfully transferred but the other one was physically unable to complete the transfer in the conditions. On the second time alongside the pump was transferred and the lifeboat crewman soon had it pumping the water out of the bilges. With the pump now keeping the water level down the coxswain decided to establish another tow.

Once this was established a course was set for Chichester harbour and after a slow passage Chichester harbour entrance was reached at 5.00pm and the tow continued into the harbour. The yacht was safely berthed alongside at Sparkes marina and left with Hayling Coastguard rescue team. after retrieving the crewman and pump the ALB departed the harbour to return to station at 5.55pm.

The ALB arrived back at station at 6.30pm and was recovered straight away, washed down refuelled and made ready for service. The crew today were Coxswain Rob Archibald, 2nd Coxswain James Albrey, Mechanic Andy Lee, Craig Sergeant, Neil Hopcraft and Tim Scott (trainee)

RNLI/Max Gilligan

Selsey lifeboat approaching yacht

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.

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