Crew injured in Force 11 off Dover: film footage


Lifeboats from Dungeness and Dover and an RAF rescue helicopter all raced to the rescue of Liquid Vortex early today, 3 January 2012, after she broke down in storm force conditions.

The Bénéteau 40.7, run by sailing school Hot Liquid, sent a distress signal from three miles off Dungeness Point at around 0530 this morning, reporting difficulties including broken steering.

All but one of the yacht’s seven crew members were incapacitated by either injury or seasickness.

After three attempts Dungeness RNLI’s Mersey class lifeboat eventually managed to transfer a crew member on board the distressed yacht to set up a tow, but the towline repeatedly broke under the strain of the very rough seas.

The more powerful Dover RNLI Severn class lifeboat took over tow attempts at around 0800, but they were prevented from entering Dover Harbour’s western entrance, which was closed due to the severe conditions.

As the convoy made instead for the safer haven of The Downs, near Ramsgate, an RAF rescue helicopter winched a paramedic down onto Liquid Vortex. Four of the yacht’s crew were airlifted for medical help.

The yacht’s three remaining crew were met by a medical team at Ramsgate when the tow reached safety.

It is not yet known what type of voyage Liquid Vortex was undertaking or when she set out. PBO was unable to speak with the owner of Hot Liquid, Jason Manning, as he was still on scene dealing with the incident.

Video footage
and still image taken from onboard Dover RNLI Severn class lifeboat City of London II
, assisting Dungeness
RNLI in rescuing the crew of sailing vessel Liquid Vortex. Courtesy RNLI.

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