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Night Call For Holyhead RNLI

Lifeboats News Release

Holyhead RNLI's all-weather lifeboat was called out last night (Thursday 10 August) to a vessel in trouble north of the TSS, the shipping lane between Anglesey and the Isle of Man.


Holyhead's Severn-class lifeboat Christopher Pearce (library photo)

The 46ft Bayliner, with two people on board, had contacted HM Coastguard to ask for help after their craft lost power en route from Cornwall to the Isle of Man.

Crew pagers sounded at 9.25pm, asking for the launch of the Severn-class lifeboat Christopher Pearce. Volunteers headed to the port where the lifeboat is currently berthed, and launched at 9.45pm and headed out into the Irish Sea.

Only an approximate location had been given due to poor comms, so the lifeboat crew worked alongside HM Coastguard in trying to gleen more information and an exact location. Just after 10pm it was reported that the casualty craft could see three lighthouse lights. Attempts to communicate directly to the craft from the lifeboat failed, and so a request was made via the coastguard for the casualty vessel to send up a flare in order for the lifeboat volunteers to try and work out their location. A first flare was sighted approximately eight nautical miles from the bow of the lifeboat at 10.15pm, and another was sighted fifteen minutes later, five degrees from the lifeboat’s port side.

A very weak communication was made directly to the Bayliner, and shortly before 11pm, dim lights were spotted by lookouts on the lifeboat’s bow. A slow approach was then made towards the vessel. The welfare of the two people on board was checked, and both were suffering with fatigue but had no other medical issues.

A VHF radio was passed to the casualties to enable improved communication, and it was agreed that the safest option would be to establish a tow and bring the vessel and her occupants back to the safety of Holyhead Harbour.

The lifeboat and casualty boat headed back to Holyhead, with regular welfare checks being made by VHF radio every 15 minutes. Arriving at Holyhead Marina at 1.20am, two lifeboat crew members boarded the casualty vessel to assist with lines, and the Bayliner was secure by 1.40am, when the lifeboat and crew headed back to the port to be made ready for any further calls.

Holyhead coxswain Tony Price said:

‘This was a great team effort, with a successful outcome. Our thanks go to HM Coastguard for their assistance in making contact with the casualty vessel, and we wish both people on board well.’

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.