Wicklow RNLI all-weather and Inshore lifeboats were requested to launch by the Coast Guard this afternoon at 3.30pm (Sunday 1st October) after a nine metre yacht with three people on board was reported to have lost its mast and rigging while racing in Wicklow bay.
The all-weather lifeboat was alongside the dismasted yacht four minutes after launching. Three lifeboat crew were transferred onto the yacht and as precaution, two children were also transferred from the stricken vessel onto the lifeboat.
Conditions at the scene were wind westerly force three with good visibility, sea state was slight.
The inshore lifeboat crew were tasked with recovering the mast and sail from the sea, which was still connected by rigging to the yacht. Once the mast and sail was recovered and secured, a tow line was established. The yacht was taken in tow back to Wicklow harbour, where it was safely secured alongside the South Quay. Thankfully no one was injured during the incident.
Speaking after the callout Second Coxswain Ciaran Doyle said ‘We located the dismasted yacht about half a mile off Wicklow harbour. As the mast and rigging were lying over the side of the yacht in the water, we got the inshore crew to recover them and once they were secure, we were able to tow the vessel to safety.’
The crew on the callout were
Coxswain Ciaran Doyle, Mechanic Connie O Gara, David O Leary, Graham Fitzgerald, Vinny Mulvihill, Peter McCann, Joe Hanlon and John Stapleton
Helm Alan Goucher, Lisa O Leary and Dean Mulvihill
(Picture, Tommy Dover)