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St Mary's Lifeboat called out to Fastnet yacht

The St Mary's Lifeboat was called out to a Fastnet yacht after its rudder failed earlier this week.

The 39ft yacht, with ten crew on board, was 77 nautical miles north west of the islands when it ran into trouble on Wednesday (August 9).

Photos of St Mary's Lifeboat taken by Ballycotton Coxswain Eolan Walsh. Click to enlarge.

The lifeboat was called out at 11.41am but because of the conditions - reported by the yacht as moderate to rough seas and force six winds - HM Coastguards at Falmouth also requested a lifeboat from Ballycotton in Cork.

It was thought the Ballycotton ALB could have a better run downwind to the yacht's position. However, the St Mary's lifeboat was first on the scene at 3.50pm.

St Mary's RNLI Lifeboat Station posted on its Facebook page: "After passing some long heavy lines and fenders for the yacht to stream behind, a tow was connected and a course set for St Mary's.

"Almost as soon as the tow commenced the yacht started yawing violently side to side due to the shape of the hull and keel and lack of rudder to hold it all in line.

"More lines were streamed from the yacht and the tow started again. Although still yawing slow progress was made SE.

"On arrival of the Ballycotton Trent they were able to pass a drogue to the yacht and this was also streamed behind.

"This helped loads and the tow settled to a good speed of 7 knots with only minor movement from the yacht."

The yacht was safely moored at Tresco at 2.30am on Thursday, after which the St Mary's crew returned via Bryher to refuel and finish the service.

They finally disembarked at 4.30am, 16 hours after launching.


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