Rescue of yacht with cracked hull

Clyde Coastguard coordinated the rescue on Thursday evening of five individuals from the yacht 'Ariadne' which reported that she had a split hull and was taking water off the Heads of Ayr, near Troon on the east coast of Scotland.

The Ayr Coastguard Rescue Team were immediately sent to the area and the Troon all weather and inshore lifeboats were requested to launch. A rescue helicopter from Prestwick was also scrambled.

The 40 foot yacht, a blue striped, white hulled vessel was heading north to Troon at the time, and reporting that she had 1 foot of water in the hull at the time. The people on board were baling water as fast as they could but were unable to reduce the inflow. Their sails were down and they were attempting to motor to the nearest port. The Coastguard requested any nearby vessels to go and investigate and offer assistance if they could.

By about 7.45pm the Troon RNLI lifeboat crew had taken four people off the yacht and put two of their own crew aboard complete with a pump. A rescue helicopter winchman was also airlifted on to the yacht as there was a report of a man in distress on board. The winchman decided to stay with the vessel and not winch the yacht crew member aboard the aircraft as he was suffering from high blood pressure. However a request was made for paramedics and an ambulance to be waiting upon the yachts arrival in the harbour.

The Marina authorities were also contacted and they made ready to hoist the vessel out of the water as soon as it arrived to prevent the yacht from sinking.

By 8.15pm the yacht had made it into the harbour and was immediately lifted from the water for a further closer inspection and the shaken man was being seen by paramedics at the scene.

George Freeburn, Watch Manager at Clyde Coastguard said

"This was a close run thing. Reports from the lifeboat crew indicated that there was a severe crack in the hull and the rescue pump was just about coping with the ingress of water as the yacht came into Troon at about 3 knots under escort. They also lost their communications en route as well.

Id very much like to thank everyone who took part in this rescue tonight, particularly the RNLI lifeboat crew, who very ably took charge when they reached the clearly distressed people on board the yacht. And also the crew of rescue helicopter R177 who were able to assist, and I am sure that the crew of the yacht were mightily relieved to see the familiar sight of these rescue units approaching them as fast as they could."

Date Added - 18-Apr-2009

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