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Volunteers from Cowes RNLI have towed a vessel with engine failure to safety this afternoon (Friday).

Cowes Lifeboat was tasked to launch by Solent Coastguard at just gone 14:00 following reports of a boat in difficulty near Fishbourne.

It didn’t take long for the lifeboat crew to locate the casualty vessel – with 3 people on board – off Woodside Bay.

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A tow was established back to Cowes Harbour, arriving at the port of safety by 15:15.

UPDATE – It has been confirmed that the rescue involved 3 men aboard a 25ft motorboat.

An electrical fault put the engine out of action in a Force 7 north-westerly between East Cowes and Fishbourne, then deployment of the boat’s 2 anchors failed to prevent the craft being driven closer to the rock-strewn shore.


A crew member alerted both the Coastguard and Cowes lifeboat’s Station Manager, Mark Southwell, of their plight.

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It was the second tow-in performed by Cowes Lifeboat this week. On Wednesday it went to the aid of a 30ft yacht struggling to make headway a mile west of Cowes.

Although initially Calshot RNLI’ D Class lifeboat had first spotted the problem, its crew decided Cowes’ more powerful Atlantic 85 lifeboat was best suited for the rescue. The yacht, on passage from Yarmouth to Cowes, was taken into Shepards Marina.

Coincidentally both Calshot and Cowes lifeboat were already afloat at the time of the emergency, undergoing training/assessment exercises.

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Was this the same broken down yacht that was rescued from off Newtown Creek and to which the Yarmouth to Lymington Wightlink Ferry was diverted??

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