Returning yacht in harbour drama

editorial image

EASTBOURNE’S lifeboat crew members were called into action on Bank Holiday Monday.

A 12-metre yacht with seven people on board had suffered a mechanical failure on its approach to Sovereign Harbour.

With winds gusting to 38 knots and in rough sea conditions, the yacht’s crew was unable to get into the harbour entrance and called Dover Coastguard for assistance.

The yacht was returning to Eastbourne from a weekend in France when the crew members found they were unable to start their engine.

A lifeboat spokesman said, “With the wind gusting to gale force, it would have been extremely hazardous to attempt to negotiate the entrance channel under sail alone so help was requested.

“When on scene two miles offshore, the volunteer crew of the ALB passed a casualty drogue, a device to slow the vessel in a following sea, to the stricken yacht.

“The yacht’s crew deployed the drogue while the lifeboat crew rigged a towline.

“The vessel was then carefully returned to harbour where it was delivered to the safety of the marina locks.”