Arklow RNLI rescued two crew members while the Commissioners of Irish Lights vessel helped save the 'rapidly sinking' 33ft cruiser

Two sailors had a lucky escape from a sinking 33ft yacht in challenging seas.

Arklow RNLI volunteer lifeboat crew were alerted to their first shout of the year by pager at 2.43pm on Saturday, 5 April.

The call out followed a Coastguard report that the sailing
vessel was in danger of sinking.

Arklow RNLI’s all weather lifeboat, the Ger Tigchelaar, launched and made its way to the scene approximately
four miles east of Arklow in challenging seas and with visibility

Upon arrival, two of Arklow RNLI’s volunteers were
put aboard the stricken 33ft vessel with salvage pumps in an effort to
prevent the yacht from sinking.

After efforts to pump out the
vessel proved unsuccessful the yacht’s grateful crew of two were
evacuated and transferred onto the lifeboat.

During the rescue, the Commissioners of Irish Lights vessel Granuaile and the Irish Coast Guard Rescue Helicopter 116 were also tasked to the scene.

With the stricken yacht almost beneath the surface, lines were passed to Granuaile from the vessel which was then secured to the deck of the larger Granuaile, with additional salvage pumps put aboard. The yacht was then pumped out and the ingress of water was stemmed.

RNLI tended to the two rescued men, as the vessel was pumped out. With three salvage pumps aboard, the yacht was saved from sinking.

Granuaile’s crew handed the lines of the yacht back to Arklow lifeboat and a towline was established.

Arklow RNLI then towed the yacht back to Arklow where all hands came ashore safely.

Mark Corcoran, Arklow RNLI volunteer lifeboat press officer and sea safety officer said: ‘The professionalism shown by
Arklow RNLI’s volunteers, Commissioners of Irish Lights crew members
and our Coast Guard colleagues overhead, not only helped save two lives
today but the dedication and bravery by all involved also helped us to
save the sinking vessel and return her safely to Arklow.

‘This shows how
all of our training and exercising with the other agencies on our coast
pays off.’

Picture credit: RNLI/EMcElheron