Both Fowey lifeboats launched to save boat stranded on rocks

Lifeboats News Release

On July 16 the coastguard requested assistance from Fowey RNLI lifeboat station after receiving a Mayday call from a lone yachtsman onboard a 27ft yacht that had suffered engine failure near the entrance to Fowey Harbour.

The vessel had been blown onto the lee shore rocks near Coombe beach on a falling tide. In what was the lifeboat station's second rescue mission of the day, Fowey volunteer lifeboat crew launched both lifeboats, sending the inshore lifeboat on ahead to make an initial assessment of the situation. At the scene the inshore lifeboat crew found the vessel on the rocks being pounded by waves that held her ashore.

Crew member James Dowrick was landed ashore by the inshore lifeboat helm Amelia Luck. James proceeded across the rocks and boarded the vessel to find the crew member unharmed. A kedge anchor was then swiftly laid from the casualty vessel by James and the inshore crew to prevent the vessel from being driven further ashore once the tide turned and started to rise.

The all-weather lifeboat arrived on scene and the Cox, Malcolm Richardson, liaised with the inshore lifeboat helm and coastguard and concluded that given the position of the vessel and the falling tide it would be unwise to attempt to tow the casualty off the rocks at that time. It was decided to evacuate the yachtsman from the yacht to Fowey in the lifeboat and then to await the rising tide before attempting to recover the vessel. Later in the afternoon a commercial company re-floated the vessel and brought it back to safety on the lifeboat pontoon in Fowey.

Fowey RNLI reminds people of the importance of keeping boat engines and electrics well maintained. It is also important to remember, especially when sailing single-handed, to carry a means of calling for help.

Martin Cocks

Boat washed up on the rocks

Fowey RNLI

Boat on the rocks

RNLI/Cathy Baillie

Fowey inshore lifeboat crew at the scene


Fowey all-weather lifeboat returning from the shout

Fowey RNLI

Fowey inshore lifeboat returning from the shout

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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