A Mayday call from a sinking yacht with a lone sailor on board sparked an Easter Sunday call out for three lifeboat crews.
Horton and Port Eynon and The Mumbles RNLI lifeboats attended the incident on March 27 evening, as Storm Katie brought 40mph winds, driving rain and high waves.
Milford Coastguard took the Mayday call from a yacht with one person on board after it hit a submerged object in Oxwich Bay. The lifeboat crews had launched withinin 15 minutes of the call. A rescue helicopter was also scrambled.
The sea conditions in Port Eynon Bay made launching Horton and Port Eynon’s D-class lifeboat difficult as the waves were some four foot high and in the dark and driving rain it was difficult to see clearly.
Ten minutes later the casualty yacht was blown onto the beach at Oxwich. The skipper aboard managed to make it to shore and the safety of the awaiting Coastguard team.
Horton and Port Eynon RNLI lifeboat reached Oxwich Point before the rescue was stood down and because of the difficult conditions The Mumbles RNLI lifeboat escorted Horton and Port Eynon’s inshore lifeboat back to their boathouse, before returning to The Mumbles and rehousing ready for launch by 1am yesterday morning.
The Mumbles RNLI Deputy Second Coxswain James Bolter said: ‘This was one of the worst nights of weather of the year so far. We’re very happy the crew of the yacht are safe. Thankfully they called for help immediately. If the yacht had grounded anywhere other than the beach there could have been tragic consequences.’
Lawrie Grove, Lifeboat Operations Manager at Horton and Port Eynon RNLI, added: ‘Our crew and all volunteers at Horton and Port Eynon lifeboat station are grateful for the assistance of the Mumbles crew. It was a good example of teamwork between lifeboat crews from different stations.
‘The Horton and Port Eynon is currently housed in a temporary building in the car park at Horton. It is a measure of the training, support and teamwork that the launching and recovery went so well in what were difficult conditions.
‘I would thank everyone who turned out to assist last night.’
He added: ‘Before setting out to sea and whilst at sea we would stress the importance of checking the weather conditions and also the state of the tide.’
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