Lifeboat launch to aid stricken yacht

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A near seven hour shout on Sunday, June 19th, saw Stornoway RNLI launch to the aid of a stricken yacht, taking on water and with two people aboard, in the seas outside Stornoway.

The RNLI Lifeboat and volunteer crew launched at 1345hours to the13m Canadian-flagged yacht which was located 18miles south east of Stornoway and had suffered damage to its rudder.

The Coastguard Rescue 948 Helicopter was also scrambled and tasked to take a pump to the casualty.

By 1400hours the helicopter had delivered a pump aboard the yacht, and also responding to the stricken boat’s PANPAN call were the ‘MV Gerda Saele’ and the Fishery Protection vessel ‘Jura’.

Stornoway RNLI Lifeboat ‘Tom Sanderson’ was on scene by 1445hours and transferred two lifeboat crew across to the yacht.

The Coastguard helicopter winchman was then lifted off the deck of the lifeboat as the R948 chopper was re-tasked to a rescue in the hills of Skye.

The yacht was pumped out and the decision taken to return to Stornoway under escort of the RNLI Lifeboat, with the two lifeboat crew remaining on board and the pump run every 15minutes on passage.

The vessels arrived in Stornoway at 1935hours, and secured the casualty at No.3 Pontoon.

Stornoway Port Authority provided a large water container which was used by the lifeboat crew to trim the yacht by the head and lift the damaged rudder fitting clear of the sea.

The yacht remains in Stornoway awaiting permanent repairs.

And the Stornoway RNLI Lifeboat was refuelled and ready for service by 2035hours.

Photo courtesy of Chris Murray