Margate’s RNLI lifeboats assist grounded cargo ship
Margate’s RNLI lifeboats have assisted in a refloating operation after a ship ran aground on the north Kent coast.
The laden 2,386dwt, 74m long general cargo ship had been anchored in Margate Roads when it dragged its anchor and ran aground on the shoreline 100m from the lifeboat station at Margate in the early hours of Sunday morning (8 October). The ship was unable to refloat itself and sat out the low tide to await a refloating attempt at the next high tide during the afternoon.
UK Coastguard and other agencies were in attendance ashore and a tug was engaged to refloat the ship. Both the all-weather and inshore lifeboats from Margate were launched to assist and provide safety cover during the refloating operation.
At exactly high water the ship was towed clear of the shoreline by the tug and went to anchor in Margate Roads awaiting further orders. None of the ship’s crew were harmed in the incident.
Peter Barker, deputy launching authority Margate lifeboat said: ‘The incident attracted the attention of national media and a large number of spectators and it was important to ensure there was adequate safety cover for both these people and the salvage operation itself.’
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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 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.