St Davids lifeboat launches twice in 12 hours to boats in distress

Lifeboats News Release

RNLI St Davids all-weather lifeboat Norah Wortley launches only 12 hours apart to separate boats in difficulty. Paged at 10:03pm on Thursday 29th September, and again at 10:05am on Friday 30th September, volunteer crews spent hours at sea in rough conditions.

RNLI/St Davids

Norah Wortley enters Milford Haven

The first launch was to a PANPAN distress call from a 42 foot motor cruiser with four people aboard approximately seven miles west of St Davids Head. Launching into a rough and pitch black Ramsey Sound the all-weather lifeboat carefully navigated the shoals and overfalls to arrive alongside the casualty vessel some twenty minutes after launching.

Once alongside it was determined that the twin engine vessel had lost one engine, and the strong flood tide was limiting its speed and progress on its remaining engine. RNLI Norah Wortley decided to standby and escort the vessel into the safety of Milford Haven marina.

Conditions improved with a drop in wind speed and flood tide, and the casualty vessel was left at the marina entrance at approximately 02:30am. The lifeboat was rehoused on station at around 03:30am but winds strengthened overnight and at 10:05am the lifeboat was tasked again to a vessel suffering engine failure off Dinas Head. The vessel with two people on board had deployed its anchor but it was dragging in the force eight wind towards the rocks.

Given the critical nature of the situation, the lifeboat made best speed to Dinas Head, aided by the following wind and tide. RNLI Fishguard also launched their inshore lifeboat into the challenging conditions.

Fortunately the casualties managed to restart their engine and began slowly making their way back to Goodwick, escorted by Fishguard and St Davids lifeboats. Fishguard inshore lifeboat crew worked in extremely challenging conditions to ensure the casualty vessel was safely back onto their trailer. Once the two people on board were in the care of Fishguard Coast Guard rescue team, both lifeboats returned to station. Although a short journey for Fishguard, St Davids had a longer slower passage, with the crew doing its best to utilise any shelter that could be provided by the coastline.

Will Chant, RNLI Coxswain for St Davids RNLI lifeboat, says: ‘This was a busy but successful night for St Davids volunteer crew with rescues in challenging sea conditions. A team effort was required to ensure a safe outcome on the second rescue and our thanks go to RNLI Fishguard and Fishguard Coast Guard rescue team for their assistance.’

RNLI media contacts

For more information please telephone Simone Eade, RNLI volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on 07799 804 922 or [email protected] or Claire Elshaw, Regional Media Officer on 07468 353 0821 or [email protected] or contact the RNLI Press Office on 01202 336789.

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For more information, please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the RNLI News Centre.

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.

RNLI/St Davids

Escorting casualty vessel in darkness into Milford Haven

RNLI/St Davids

Escorting RNLI Fishguard inshore lifeboat and casualty vessel into Goodwick harbour

Amy Mabe

RNLI lifeboats escorting casualty vessel at Goodwick

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.

Learn more about the RNLI

For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

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.

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