A 20ft sportsboat suffered a ‘sudden dismasting’ yesterday evening, leaving its crew adrift in the Solent.

An RNLI spokesman said the experienced crew had been out for an evening sail in light wind (8-9 knots) when the mast ‘suddenly snapped in two, collapsing to the deck.’

With the sails and rigging left trailing in the water the sailboat’s skipper called the lifeboat station for assistance.

Portsmouth Atlantic 85 Lifeboat launched just after 7.30pm and attended the incident approximately a mile south of the Langstone Harbour entrance.

Related articles

The lifeboat crew ensured the four men where safe and well before towing the stricken boat Mutineer to the nearest marina.