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46ft vessel hits chain ferry in 100th call for Poole volunteers

Lifeboats News Release

Poole Lifeboat volunteers launch to a Pan Pan as another Yacht collides with Chain Ferry, notching up a 100 ‘Shouts’ for the busy Coastal Station

Poole Lifeboat was launched by UK Coastguard at 5.30pm (Saturday September 8) to a Pan Pan, a 46ft yacht with 7 people on-board which had collided with the Chain Ferry.

The lifeboat launched in minutes and came across the yacht, a double hulled catamaran inside the harbour, it was drifting down the channel. The yacht had sustained extensive damage down the port side, and its port keel had broken off and was floating nearby.

Repeating Pan-Pan three times over the radio states that; ‘It’s serious, we need help but there isn’t a grave and imminent danger to the boat or anyone on board’. There was a strong flood tide and a south westerly breeze in the harbour.

Two lifeboat volunteers were transferred on-board the stricken vessel, to check that the occupants were okay, although the damage to the yacht was extensive, there was no water ingress.

A tow line was attached and the vessel was brought to the Quay and taken into Poole Quay Boat Haven. A PHC vessel located the port keel and towed it the quay as it was semi-submerged it could have been a hazard to navigation.

Volunteer Helm Jonathan Clark said;

‘This is the second vessel that has collided with the ferry that we have launched to in recent weeks. Once more the strong flood tide has caught them out, thankfully this time, nobody was injured and hopefully the yacht can be repaired. The combination of the tides, the narrow entrance to the harbour and the Chain Ferry make this an extremely hazardous area.

For the volunteers at Poole it has been an incredibly busy few months and the ‘Shout today brought the tally to 100.

Volunteer Lifeboat Operations Manager, Paul Glatzel reflected on this tally and said;

“To see our 100th launch occur so early in the year reflects how busy the last few months have been. After an initial slow start to the year due to the cold weather our volunteers have had an exceptionally busy summer with our Atlantic and D-Class lifeboats often launching multiple times per day and night. Thanks to every branch of the Station from those that volunteer as Crew to those that do so in the Fundraising, Visits, old Lifeboat Museum and Community Safety teams. The commitment required to respond to so many shouts and support such a busy station is considerable for volunteers and of course their families too. “


Poole lifeboat approaching the 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, Carrybridge 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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