• Dismasted yacht. Photo RNLI.
    Dismasted yacht. Photo RNLI.
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The UK Coastguard requested the immediate launch of the Selsey all-weather Lifeboat after receiving a mayday distress call from a yacht that had been dismasted 3 miles south-west of Selsey Bill.

The Shannon class all-weather Lifeboat launched at 12.13 p.m. on Saturday 22nd August and made best speed to the yacht. The Coastguard rescue helicopter had also been tasked. At 12.33 p.m. the Lifeboat arrived on scene and made contact with the yacht skipper who confirmed all six crew were OK. They said that they were still sorting out the damaged mast and rigging and would use the engine to get to the nearest port, which was Chichester Harbour, and so the Lifeboat was requested to escort them.

The weather on scene was wind west south west force 6-7 sea state rough in sunshine. At 12.50 p.m. the yacht skipper reported that Sparkes Marina in Chichester Harbour had no room for them so they were continuing to Portsmouth Harbour. By this time they had secured everything on board and said they were happy to continue the passage to Portsmouth without an escort. The Coastguards were happy with that and they would conduct welfare checks on the radio with the yacht at regular intervals and so the Lifeboat was released to return to station at 1.00 p.m.

The Lifeboat arrived back at station at 1.24 p.m. and was recovered straight away.

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