Rigid Inflatable broken down

Date: Thursday 13 August 2020

Location: Falmouth Bay

Weather: WSW 2, Slight Sea and No Swell, Fair Visibility, Partly Cloudy

Inshore lifeboat: (Launched 17:58/ Returned 18:48) – Jamie Wakefield, (Helmsman), Luke Wills, Tom Bird, Chris Simpson


At 17:50 Falmouth Coastguard requested that Falmouth Inshore Lifeboat be launched following a 999 call from a 6.5m Rigid Inflatable with two people on board which had broken down in Falmouth Bay. The boat was unsure of its position but believed they were about 3 miles offshore.

The Inshore Lifeboat launched from her slipway at 17:58 and headed towards St Anthony Lighthouse before searching seawards into Falmouth Bay. At 18:12 the Rigid Inflatable was located 1.5 miles South of St Anthony Lighthouse. A towline was passed to the boat and at 18:16 the tow back into Falmouth commenced. Once in Falmouth Inner Harbour the boat was taken to the Grove Place Dinghy Park where it was safely moored up at 18:45 so the Inshore Lifeboat was then released to return to its station.

The Inshore Lifeboat was recovered onto its slipway at 18:48 where the lifeboat was refuelled and made ready for service by 18:59.

The Rigid Inflatable had suffered engine failure due to a fuel problem. They had initially tried to get another vessel to come out to assist them, but this was delayed, so with an uncertain location and reducing visibility it was decided to task the Inshore Lifeboat to assist them. The boat did not have a GPS, charts or a working VHF radio all of which would have helped locate the vessel so suitable safety advise was given, but its occupants did have lifejackets and had tried to resolve the situation themselves.

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