Four Boys aids catamaran
Amble RNLI Lifeboat launched in to assist catamaran with mechanical failure in severe gale force winds.
The weekend got off to a busy start on the evening of Friday 4th Feb for the volunteer crew of the Amble RNLI All-weather Lifeboat ‘The Four Boys’ when they were paged to go to the assistance of a catamaran suffering from engine trouble approximately 2.5 miles out at sea off Amble Harbour. The severe winds on Friday evening (which were gusting at 64 knots) and lack of visibility as a result of the spray from the sea and the darkness meant that the crew were launching under very difficult conditions.
Reason: At 20.06hrs, Humber Coastguard requested the immediate launch of the Amble All-weather lifeboat when they received a radio message from ‘Porth da Frac’ – a 16.5m catamaran which was heading South down the East coast with 2 persons on board. The catamaran had developed a mechanical fault on one of her two engines en-route which meant that the Skipper only had half the power and manoeuvrability for the boat. Due to the worsening weather conditions, the Skipper had decided to make for the safety of Amble Harbour but with only 50% power and increasing storm conditions, he requested the assistance of Amble Lifeboat to escort him in and remain on standby in case a situation developed. The Catamaran was eventually returned to the safety of Amble Harbour with the Lifeboat and made secure.
The Amble RNLI Coxswain for this rescue John Wingfield went on to say “We knew the conditions for this job were difficult to say the least. However, thanks to the generous support of the public in supporting the RNLI, our crews are trained and equipped to deal with severe conditions and rescues such as this. The Skipper of the catamaran did exactly the right thing in making sure that his boat and crew were kept safe by calling us to his assistance in the difficult set of circumstances he faced. We were only too happy to help ensure all remained well”
Wind: WSW – gusting to Storm Force 10
Visibility: Poor – Heavy spray
Sea state: 3 metre swell
Time of launch: 20.06
Time of return: 21.30
Boats launched: ALB