Tanker gave assistance to crew on 40-footer after heavy weather

Three men were rescued by a tanker on Friday after suffering a series of knockdowns in severe weather around 300 miles west of Ireland.

Their 40ft Island Packet cutter, Fleur, was en route to Greenland from Falmouth, when they called Falmouth Coastguard early on Friday.

They indicated that they had lost all their instrumentation but still had a hand held global positioning device and paper charts.

The skipper had reportedly taken a knock to his head, but the crew reported that they had a liferaft, flares and two satellite phones on board.

They described the weather as very rough with Force 11 winds, with average speeds of above 60 knots, and waves of between 20 and 30 feet.

The Irish Coastguard sent a fixed wing aircraft to go to the position of the Fleur and a tanker `Yellowstone’ contacted Falmouth offering assistance.

By 1730 the tanker was on the scene and the crew of the yacht were reported safe aboard by 2100 heading for the USA.