Eastbourne Lifeboat called to sinking yacht

A lone yachtsman in his German registered yacht got into difficulties whilst leaving Sovereign Harbour on Saturday morning (May 16).

The boat struck the sunken wreck of the Barn Hill which holed the vessel.

The yacht began taking on water at such a rate that the bilge pumps were unable to cope with the ingress.

The yachtsman called for help, first to the marina and then by a distress call on VHF radio.

Fortunately local fishing vessel Beachy Head was close by and went to the assistance of the stricken yacht.

One of the fishermen transferred to the yacht to assist with bailing out the water whilst the vessel was taken under tow back the short distance to harbour.

Meanwhile Eastbourne’s all-weather lifeboat was preparing to launch.

The lifeboat’s powerful salvage pump was put aboard the yacht and was able to remove sufficient water to keep the yacht afloat whilst it was taken to the hoist bay for an emergency lift out.

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