The crew of a 40ft sailing yacht which ran aground on the shingle bank, two nautical miles south west of Hurst Point, had to wait five hours before finally being refloated thanks to both Yarmouth and Lymington RNLIs on Monday.
After being tasked at 7.20am, an initial search by the all-weather Yarmouth lifeboat located the yacht, and in order to get close enough to assess the situation, the lifeboat’s smaller ‘Y’ boat was deployed with two RNLI crew members on board.
There were no visible signs of damage or water ingress and none of the yacht’s crew were injured. As the tide was still ebbing and conditions were calm, Yarmouth RNLI decided to return to harbour as it would be several hours before the yacht could be refloated.
Yarmouth RNLI’s Severn class lifeboat relaunched at 9.20am and returned to the casualty’s position so they could stand by ready to ensure the boat would refloat safely. As the tide began to rise, it remained too shallow for the all-weather lifeboat to manoeuvre close to the shingle bank.
The ‘Y’ boat was launched with the intention of attempting to tow the bow of the casualty round. After several unsuccessful attempts, Yarmouth took the decision to call for assistance from Lymington RNLI’s inshore lifeboat.
Even though the tide was rising, the yacht was struggling to refloat and needed assistance to be pulled clear of the shingle. Lymington RNLI’s ‘B’ class lifeboat was eventually able to tow the casualty clear and the boat was refloated at 12.20pm. The yacht’s crew made the decision to continue with their planned voyage.