Eastbourne’s lifeboats withstood an unusually busy couple of days during the week after being called out to three incidents in just 24 hours.
On Wednesday afternoon (June 4), Dover Coastguard received a number of calls from members of the public, who were concerned that a yacht in Pevensey Bay had become entangled in fishing gear.
The inshore lifeboat was launched at around 5.30pm and found a single-handed yachtsman making extremely slow progress towards Sovereign Harbour. The man on board refused all initial offers of assistance from the volunteer lifeboat crew.
Three hours later, Sovereign Sailing Club’s rescue boat contacted Dover Coastguard after coming across the same yacht, which has made very little, if any progress.
The skipper admitted he was having trouble, his foresail had shredded and he was unable to make headway with his engine, so the lifeboat was launched again to escort the yacht into the locks.
The vessel was met at the marina by a local coastguard officer, who offered safety advice to the yachtsman.
At around 9.30 on Thursday morning (June 5), the dredger Sand Fulmar was 18 miles off the Eastbourne coast when it came across what appeared to be the upturned hull of a fishing boat floating just below the surface.
The Eastbourne all-weather lifeboat was immediately launched while the dredger remained by the object.
When on the scene, the volunteer lifeboat crew were able to conduct a detailed inspection and the object was identified as the metal doors of a large shipping container.
Neither the lifeboat nor the dredger had suitable equipment capable of lifting the object and it was not possible to mark it in any way.
An obvious hazard to navigation, further attempts will be co-ordinated by Dover Coastguard to recover, sink or mark the object.
For more information on the RNLI, visit their website at www.rnli.org.uk.