Porthdinllaen lifeboat launches to assist 30-foot ketch in distress

THE Porthdinllaen All weather Tamar Class lifeboat was requested to launch by the UK Coastguard in order to assess the situation on Friday morning to assist a 30-foot ketch with three people on board in difficulties near Towyn Beach, Tudweiliog.

The lifeboat, with Second Coxswain Robert Jones at the helm and a compliment of volunteer crew, launched at 10:05 am and made best headway to the casualty, which was approximately five miles west of Porthdinllaen.

More details were received while in transit, that the yacht had suffered engine failure but had been able to deploy its anchor, but there were concerns whether the anchor would hold due to the exposed area combined with the weather conditions.

Arriving on scene, and with a strong northerly wind and heavy swell, the coxswain assessed the situation and determined a tow was the safest way to assist the crew on board. The lifeboat was able to manoeuvre close enough to the yacht to transfer a towing line at the first attempt. With the yacht’s crew able to secure the tow line, the lifeboat was able to take the pressure off the yacht anchor line for it’s crew to be able to safely retrieve.

Once this was complete, the lifeboat began the tow of the yacht back towards Porthdinllaen, a feat that took 90 minutes due to the conditions. Once back at Porthdinllaen, the yacht was placed on a safe mooring in Porthdinllaen Harbour, and the yacht’s crew was taken on board the lifeboat and transferred ashore.

Second Coxswain Robert Jones added: ‘We train weekly for such scenarios, and I must thank the crew for the professional and calm way they performed today, considering the testing weather and sea conditions we faced. We were glad to be able to assist the yacht and its crew.’

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