Lifejackets must be worn on deck - and worn properly say Coastguard

Recreational sailors are being urged to ensure that lifejackets should be worn while on deck following a family drama in Scotland.

Three people were recovered from the water in Loch Torridon, Wester Ross after their boat capsized last Saturday morning.

At 11.55am Stornoway Coastguard received a 999 call from a member of the public, who described seeing people on the upturned hull of a capsized
vessel out on the Loch. He was able to keep watching and provide updates.

Stornoway Coastguard issued a Distress Broadcast to alert other vessels in the area. The fishing vessels Wanderer and Boy Ryan responded immediately and the Coastguard Rescue Helicopter from Stornoway and Kyle RNLI Inshore Lifeboat were sent to the scene.

The casualties were recovered by the fishing vessel Irene K and taken ashore where the paramedic from the rescue helicopter examined them and found that one of the children was showing signs of mild hypothermia.

The child was then transferred to the care of the ambulance service.

The adult and two children had been dinghy sailing in the nearby Loch Diabaig when their vessel capsized, throwing all three into water.

Murdo Macaulay, Stornoway Coastguard watch manager said: ‘Two of the casualties were wearing lifejackets, although the third was not.

‘Recreational sailors should wear lifejackets at all times whilst on deck. These should be well maintained and should have a spray hood, light and whistle.

‘You must ensure the lifejacket has a crotch strap and use it.

‘If you do find yourself unexpectedly in the water, even for a very short time, it is essential to get yourself medical attention since hypothermia can be deceptively difficult to spot.’