Becalmed Yacht with fouled propellor

Date: Saturday 24 July 2021

Location: Off Rosemullion Head, Falmouth Bay

Weather: E 1, Calm Sea and Slight Swell, Excellent Visibility, Partly Cloudy

Inshore lifeboat: (Proceeded 18:27 / Returned 20:04) – Nick Head (Helmsman), Andy Edwards, Lloyd Barron, Jemima Henstridge-Blows


At 18:16 Falmouth Coastguard requested that Falmouth Inshore Lifeboat be launched to assist a 10m yacht with four people on board which had fouled its propellor on a discarded net and was becalmed and drifting half a mile off Rosemullion Head. Another vessel was standing by the yacht until the arrival of the Inshore Lifeboat.

The Inshore Lifeboat launched from its slipway at 18:27 and having rounded Pendennis Point headed across Falmouth Bay arriving on scene at 18:42. It was decided to tow the yacht back to Falmouth where the skipper could arrange for the propellor to be cleared and checked for any damage. Once off Falmouth Docks the yacht was strapped alongside the Inshore Lifeboat and was taken to the Royal Cornwall Yacht Club where the yacht was safely moored alongside the quay wall at 19:58 so that it could dry out on the next low tide. The Inshore Lifeboat was then released to return to its station.

The Inshore Lifeboat was recovered on to its slipway at 20:04 where it was refuelled and made ready for service by 20:30.

The yacht had been on passage from Falmouth to the Helford Estuary when it had picked up the net in its propellor. With very light airs the yacht was unable to sail so they issued a Pan broadcast on their VHF. With no vessels able to assist with a tow the decision was made to launch the Inshore Lifeboat to tow the yacht to the nearest safe haven.

To support Falmouth Lifeboat please visit