Eastbourne’s all-weather lifeboat was launched on Friday afternoon (August 1) to recover an apparently abandoned dinghy from the busy south west shipping lane.
The 2.5metre dinghy was reported to Dover Coastguard by several large vessels using the SW shipping lane, 13 miles offshore from Eastbourne.
As the tanker ‘Happy Bear’ stood by to mark the position of the abandoned dinghy, the ALB was launched to investigate. When on scene, the dinghy was recovered to the ALB by the volunteer crew and the tanker proceeded on passage to Le Havre.
With no evidence of a possible casualty and damage to the dinghy consistent with it breaking loose of a tow, it was decided by the rescue co-ordination centre to stand down and return to the station.
On Saturday afternoon the ALB was launched again to two vessels - a 17ft open fishing boat with two people on board had broken down dangerously close to the shore in Pevensey Bay and a 36ft yacht that had developed a fuel leak. Both vessels were taken under tow in choppy sea conditions and taken to the safety of Sovereign Harbour.
On Sunday evening, a Dutch yacht reported they were unable to start their engine. The boarding boat used to ferry the volunteer crew to the lifeboat was on scene so it took the yacht under tow and took it to the marina locks.