Three injured in late-night RIB crash in Cowes

A RIB carrying five passengers that crashed into the Breakwater, East Cowes on Thursday night were warned by Police not to travel as the crew appeared to be drunk.

Three casualties were taken to hospital; two with head injuries and one with a spinal injury. The four men and one woman on board – aged between 30 and 50 – have not been named.

The crew were heading for Hayling Island at about 11:15pm and hit the breakwater shortly after. MCA reports indicate the RIB had no lifejackets on board and no lights.

PC Sid Botham told PBO, that the crew managed to return the RIB back to Town Quay after the crash and were all taken to St Mary’s Hospital, IOW.

‘The 5.5m humber RIB had a 90hp on the back and the damage to the hull was severe,’ he said. ‘There is a crack from gunnel to gunnel about 15in back from the point of the hull and the front sponson was punctured. All the internal plywood bulkheads were ripped out and there’s a fracture down the floor.’

The RIB is now at Kingston Marine Services, being held for further investigation by Cowes Harbour Authority.

No breathalyser was done on the scene, although Cowes Harbour byelaws prohibit drink-driving. Hampshire marine police are also looking into whether there are any charges to be brought for ‘endangering life at sea’ in contravention of the Merchant Shipping Act.