Becalmed Yacht with engine failure

Date: Sunday 25 July 2021

Location: 2 miles South of Zone Point

Weather: WNW 1-2, Calm Sea and Slight Swell, Excellent Visibility, Partly Cloudy

Inshore lifeboat: (Proceeded 22:20 / Returned 00:06) – Nick Head (Helmsman), Adam West, Chris Simpson, Wendy Rabett


At 22:07 Falmouth Coastguard requested that Falmouth Inshore Lifeboat be launched to assist a single handed 6m yacht which was becalmed and could not start its engine 2 miles South of Zone Point.

The Inshore Lifeboat launched from its slipway at 22:20 and headed out into Falmouth Bay eventually locating the yacht at 22:36 further to the east from its original position. A lifeboat crew member was put onboard the yacht to assist in establishing the tow and at 22:46 the tow into Falmouth commenced. The yacht was taken to the Falmouth Premier Marina in Penryn River where the yacht was safely moored alongside the fuel pontoon at 23:53. The Inshore Lifeboat was then released to return to its station.

The Inshore Lifeboat was recovered on to its slipway at 00:06 where it was refuelled and made ready for service by 00:25.

The yacht had been on passage to Brighton and having left Newlyn earlier in the day had arranged a berth in Falmouth for the night. As it entered Falmouth Bay the wind had dropped, and the tide was taking the yacht up the coast. The skipper had tried to start his outboard motor but it had failed to start. With the onset of darkness and being exhausted having been as sea all day the skipper contacted the Coastguard for assistance. With no other vessels available to provide a tow it was decided to launch the Inshore Lifeboat to assist. The skipper was extremely appreciative of the assistance he was given.

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