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Joint rescue for Rhyl and Llandudno RNLI

Lifeboats News Release

A 32ft yacht which had ran aground on a sand bank off Talacre with two occupants onboard, sparked a joint rescue effort by RNLI crews from Rhyl and Llandudno.

RNLI/Callum Robinson

The call was received at 5.20pm on Wednesday 5 June, with both the all-weather and inshore RNLI lifeboat crews from Rhyl RNLI being tasked with recovering a vessel that had become stuck on the West Hoyle sand bank off the point of Ayr, Talacre.

By 5.46pm, both the Rhyl all-weather and inshore volunteer lifeboat crews had located the vessel and arrived on scene. The same adverse weather conditions that had lead to the casualty becoming stuck had also fortunately dislodged the vessel from the sand bank.

Allowing enough time for the RNLI crews to connect a tow line, removing the yacht from the imminent danger of the beach and the Mostyn Channel, a stretch of water heavily frequented by the wind farm support vessels.

Following various conversations between the RNLI and HM Coastguard, it was decided the safest course of action, given the tidal conditions and the lack of headway being made, was to take the casualty vessel to the shelter of Conwy Estuary.

As Rhyl all-weather lifeboat had been at sea on training exercises since 9am that morning, it was agreed that Llandudno RNLI would escort the casualty vessel from the Little Orme, into Deganwy Marina.

The coxswain of Llandudno's Shannon class lifeboat made the decision to place two crew members on board the vessel in order to provide support and assistance to its crew, allowing the yacht to proceed under its own power.

Whilst in the tight Conwy Estuary and with the day light rapidly failing, the engine of the casualty vessel failed, the RNLI crew members on board quickly dropping the anchor while Llandudno all-weather lifeboat joined.

The coxswain decided to rig an alongside tow at this point. Due to the position of the casualty, close to the entrance of the Mostyn channel, the vessel was considered a danger to navigation and a tow was established allowing Llandudno RNLI lifeboat to safely bring the vessel into the marina at 11.53pm.

Once the vessel was secured in Deganwy Marina, Llandudno lifeboat was returned to the station for recovery.

RNLI Rhyl Coxswain Martin Jones said:

'I would like to thank our colleagues from RNLI Llandudno for their assistance in what was an extremely long towing operation. A brilliant example of the team work and rigorous training performed by all RNLI stations and crew members, meaning we are ready for all eventualities at all moments.'

RNLI/Llandudno RNLI

RNLI/Callum Robinson

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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