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Fowey lifeboat rescues sinking motor boat

Lifeboats News Release

On 16 July at 6.02am, the coastguard tasked Fowey volunteer RNLI lifeboat crew to launch their inshore D-class lifeboat to assist a 35ft motor boat moored up at Pont Pill in Fowey Harbour that was taking on water and in danger of sinking.

When the lifeboat arrived they were met by Fowey Harbour Commissioner's deputy harbour master, Jonathan Pritchard, (who is the cox at Fowey Lifeboat Station), who was first on scene and who had requested help. They found that the motor boat was listing to one side. There were two adults and one child who had got off the boat and onto the pontoon. Water had come in the transom gasket taking out all the boat’s electrics and the boat was in danger of sinking. The inshore lifeboat crew were tasked to take the water pump from the all-weather lifeboat to the sinking vessel. Once pumped out, the lifeboat crew, assisted by the harbour staff, towed the stricken vessel to Tom's boat yard who were standing by to crane the boat out of the water.

By preventing the sinking of the boat a major environmental issue was avoided. Helm Adam Russell said: 'We are reminding boat owners to ensure that their boats are regularly serviced and maintained. For example check the seal between the gear box and water and change it in accordance with the manufacturers guidelines.’ The three people onboard were taken to safety by the harbour staff.

In a separate incident on Thursday 14 July the coastguard requested the inshore lifeboat launch to rescue two people on paddle boards off Spit beach with a North wind blowing them offshore. The first informant was a lifeboat crew member. When he saw a Jet ski assisting both casualties, he called the lifeboat operations manager to cancel the shout, and the lifeboat operations manager confirmed with the coastguard that the shout could be cancelled. Fowey lifeboat operations manager said: ‘It is important to always check the weather forecast, wind and tide times and to choose a lifeguarded beach when available. Avoid offshore winds because they will tire you quickly when attempting to return to shore.’

Fowey RNLI

Fowey volunteer lifeboat crew Peter Parry and Callum Pritchard set up the pump

Fowey RNLI

Water being pumped out of the motor boat

Fowey RNLI

Fowey lifeboat crew assist with boat being craned out of the water

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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Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.