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St Ives RNLI lifeboats launch to distressed and dismasted yacht

Lifeboats News Release

St Ives Shannon and D class lifeboats launched yesterday morning (Tuesday 4 September) to a dismasted yacht which had trapped the skipper in the cabin.

The St Ives Shannon class lifeboat towing the yacht

RNLI/Barry Hall

The St Ives Shannon class lifeboat towing the yacht

The St Ives lifeboat crew answered the pagers at around 9.40am and the D class inshore lifeboat. The seas were relatively choppy, and the team led by David Chard at the helm were quickly on route to a yacht that was moored on the RNLI outside mooring approximately 300 metres off of Porthminster beach. This lifeboat mooring ensures that vessels in distress and with permission from the Coastguard can moor here as it’s not impacted by the tides.

The inshore lifeboat volunteers where able to assist the casualty vessel and assess the situation. The mast was down, and the skipper was contained within the boat’s cabin. The team were able to release the skipper by removing the mast from the doorway, rigging and various other items – the casualty was assessed for any injuries or medical concerns which thankfully there were none. The team ensured that the yacht was made safe before returning to the station.

At 12pm the Shannon class all-weather lifeboat led by coxswain Rob Cocking with a full crew, launched to assist the yacht in recovery. On arrival they could see that the 8-9 ft mast was in the water.

Jack Coop, Nick Philips and Robin Langford from the lifeboat crew boarded the yacht to get the mast out of the water and rigged it up onto the boat.

The crew then got the yacht on tow and made their way to Hayle. The conditions were a little challenging with a northeast 6-7 wind and 1.5-2 metre swell. The crew spoke with the Hayle lifeguards to assist with clearing the path of kite and wind surfers, so the lifeboat could quickly tow and deliver the yacht safely to Hayle. No injuries reported, and no medical support required. The team successfully completed the tow of the damaged yacht and then returned to the lifeboat station to ready again for service if required.

Dismasted yacht

RNLI/Dave Chard

Dismasted yacht
Crew assist on dismasted yacht

RNLI/Barry Hall

Crew assist on dismasted yacht

Key facts about the RNLI

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. Our volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service in the United Kingdom and Ireland from 238 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 240 beaches around the UK and operates a specialist flood rescue team, which can respond anywhere across the UK and Ireland when inland flooding puts lives at risk.

The RNLI relies on public donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. As a charity it is separate from, but works alongside, government-controlled and funded coastguard services. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 our lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved at least 140,000 lives. Volunteers make up 95% of the charity, including 4,600 volunteer lifeboat crew members and 3,000 volunteer shore crew. Additionally, tens of thousands of other dedicated volunteers raise funds and awareness, give safety advice, and help in our museums, shops and offices.

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The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number 20003326 in the Republic of Ireland