People in water from capsized mooring maintenance boat

Wednesday 22 March 2017

Location: Helford River

Weather: SW 2, Slight Sea and No Swell, Good Visibility, Sunny Periods

Inshore lifeboat (Launched 17:32 / Returned 18:22) – Neil Capper (Helmsman), Thomas Telford, Jamie Wakefield

All-weather lifeboat (Launched 17:35 / Returned 18:30) – Jonathan Blakeston (Coxswain), Luke Wills, Dave Nicoll, Diane Bush, Andy Jenkin, Jake Ingleby


At 17:25 Falmouth Coastguard requested that both Falmouth All Weather and Inshore Lifeboats be launched following reports that a boat had capsized in the Helford River and people were in the water, The Falmouth Coastguard Rescue Team was also tasked to assist.

The Inshore Lifeboat launched from her slipway at 17:32 followed shortly afterwards by the All Weather Lifeboat which left its pontoon berth at 17:35. The Inshore Lifeboat arrived on scene at 17:45 and attempted to confirm that all people had been safely recovered by other vessels. The All Weather Lifeboat arrived on scene at 17:53 but at 17:58 it was confirmed that no further assistance was required so at 18:02 both lifeboats were released to return to their station.

The Inshore Lifeboat being recovered onto its slipway at 18:22 with the All Weather Lifeboat arrived back alongside its pontoon berth at 18:30, with both being refuelled and ready for service by 18:40.

The vessel involved was believed to be maintaining the moorings in the Helford River when it capsized. The exact reason for the accident is still to be confirmed but the six people and the dog on board the vessel ended up in the water before being rescued by other nearby vessels. This could have easily turned into a very tragic incident if it had not been for the assistance of the nearby boats.