A waterlogged, listing tanker was towed to safety after being in collision with a cargo vessel, approximately four miles off Peterhead.
Aberdeen Coastguard received a Mayday call on Saturday from the Erin Wood with two crew on board, which had taken on water following a collision with a Cyprus-registered cargo vessel Daroj. No injuries to crew were reported.
The RNLI Peterhead Tamar lifeboat were tasked to attend the incident just after 5pm.
On arrival at the scene, the volunteer crew found that the 24-metre tanker Erin Wood had almost capsized, having taken a large ingress of water through the wheelhouse, disabling all power and engines, which resulted in a severe list.
The two crew of the tanker had launched the boat liferaft, in case they had to abandon ship.
Volunteer lifeboat crew were transferred to the tanker with a salvage pump from the lifeboat to assist the two crew of the boat to pump out the engine room and the cabin of the tanker in order to prevent capsize.
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The pumping operation took several hours to stabilize the tanker prior to it being taken in tow by the Peterhead trawler Ocean Endeavour which towed it to the harbour of refuge at Peterhead. The two boats were escorted back to Peterhead by the lifeboat.
After the tanker reached the harbour of refuge it was taken in tow by two Peterhead harbour vessels and safely berthed on the south breakwater. The lifeboat was then stood down and returned to its berth at Peterhead Harbour, at 11.45 pm. The sea conditions were 1–2 metre swell, and wind was 11-16 knots SSW.
A spokesman from the Maritime and Coastguard Agency said an investigation was underway. The Marine Accident Investigation Branch, MAIB has also been informed.