NEWHAVEN LIFEBOAT RESCUES YACHT STRANDED IN MAIN SHIPPING LANES
August 25 2011.
Volunteers on Newhaven's Severn class Lifeboat David and Elizabeth Acland were tasked at 17.28 on Tuesday, (August 23rd), to a ten metre Dutch yacht, "Sparticus", which had become entangled in fishing gear in the main shipping lanes 20 miles south east of Newhaven.
The yacht was on route from Dieppe to the Isle of Wright when she became entangled. With light winds she was unable to make way and there were concerns that her rudder was also compromised.
The yacht had drifted into the centre of the main shipping lane. With large ships bearing down on the casualty the Fisheries Protection Vessel Moven, which was in the area, stood by as a guard vessel, warning larger commercial vessels of the yacht's predicament. The yacht's radio had also failed, so the crew were unable to warn approaching ships.
Once on the scene, Newhaven lifeboat tried to pass a tow, but without radio communication and a language barrier, this proved difficult. A lifeboat crew member was transferred to the casualty to assist with establishing the tow; he also took a hand held VHF radio to enable communication with the casualty on the three and half hour tow back to Newhaven.
The vessel was safely towed into Newhaven harbour and the Newhaven lifeboat returned to station at 22.40.