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boatwheelersbayThe power of Bembridge RNLI’s All Weather Lifeboat (ALB) was called upon to assist in yesterday’s Round the Island Race after a yacht ran aground near Ventnor.

Early in the afternoon the ‘Alfred Albert Williams’ was asked to assist the 26ft yacht ‘Love in a Mist’ which had become dismasted with three crew on board off Bonchurch. Once on scene and having ascertained that the crew were ok, a tow was established and the lifeboat headed back towards Bembridge.

Whilst en-route back, a more serious situation arose when the yacht ‘Rumpleteazer’ with 4 crew on board ran aground in Wheelers Bay close to Ventnor. Initially the Sandown and Shanklin Independent Lifeboat (SSILB) was tasked to the assist, however, as they were unable to effectively pull the yacht from the rocks, Bembridge’s larger lifeboat with more power was requested.

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wheelersbayyachtrescueThe D-Class Bembridge Inshore Lifeboat was asked to rendezvous with Bembridge’s larger lifeboat and take over the tow, releasing the Alfred Albert Williams to go and assist in Wheelers Bay. Having taken over the tow in the Whitecliff Bay area, the inshore lifeboat took the ‘Love in the mist’ into Bembridge Harbour and having moored the yacht returned to patrol the area off Bembridge.

In a joint operation between Bembridge RNLI and SSILB, a tow line was established with ‘Rumpleteazer’ when the Independent Lifeboat with a shallower draft took the line in to the yacht and once it was clear the Bembridge lifeboat was able to pull the yacht clear from the foreshore into deeper water.

As the yacht had been aground and bumped on several rocks whilst being pulled clear a check was made to ensure there was no water ingress and that the crew were ok.

bembridgelifeboatwheelersbayThe jib sail of ‘Rumpleteazer’ was stuck up the mast following the grounding and it could not be lowered. This, alongside a rope around its propeller, meant the yacht could not sail or motor. As a result of the incident and the situation faced Bembridge Lifeboat towed the yacht up in to the middle of the Solent where the tow was then passed to Portsmouth RNLI, who were to take the yacht into Portsmouth Harbour so that it could be lifted out of the water to check any damage that may have occurred.

Featured photograph thanks to Pro4KCam

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