Four Boys launched to aid fishing boat Fidelity
Amble RNLI lifeboat launched to stricken fishing vessel 22 miles east-north-east of Amble harbour
The Amble All-weather lifeboat The Four Boys was launched on Friday evening after receiving a launch request from HM Coastguard to go to the aid of a local fishing vessel Fidelity which had become entangled in fishing nets and as such had no propulsion or steering capability.
On this particular occasion, the lifeboat was launched in exceptionally quick time as the crew had just returned from an exercise and were still assembled in the boathouse when the initial contact was heard from Fidelity on the radio to the Coastguard prior to the pagers being activated for a launch. As a result, the crew anticipated the launch request and were kitted up and back on the boat with engines running when the formal launch request came through just before 9.00 pm.
The boat set off with best possible speed to the given location which was a point approximately 22 miles ENE of Amble harbour and upon arrival at the scene, quickly assessed the situation and the condition of the 3 persons on board. It soon became apparent that Fidelity was caught up in her own fishing gear and that the only option was to tow her 22 miles back to the safety of Amble harbour. As the sea was relatively calm, this was considered the best option.
The tow proceeded without incident and both boats reached Amble harbour at 01.45 hrs safe and well. The Four Boys was then refuelled and made ready for service once again.
RNLI Coxswain John Connell “Fortunately, the sea state and visibility made it a successful and safe operation in getting Fidelity and her crew back ashore, but this kind of incident in different weather conditions would be very dangerous as any boat that finds itself without steering or propulsion in a heavy sea is at the mercy of the waves which could lead to capsize if the Skipper is unable to respond due to mechanical failure. Thankfully, this wasn’t the case and our volunteer crew members carried out a textbook towing operation following our well established training techniques which are made possible thanks to the generosity of the public in supporting the RNLI and its work.”
Sea state – Calm
Wind – SW Force 1
Visibility – Good