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Lifeboat rescues yacht and skipper caught by the tide in Kingsdown

Walmer lifeboat volunteer crew rescued a yacht and its skipper caught by the tide in Kingsdown, on Thursday evening.

Walmer’s inshore crew launched their Atlantic 85 lifeboat ‘Donald McLauchlan’ immediately after a call at 6.22pm.

Lifeboat helmsman Dan Sinclair and volunteer towing the yacht to safety
Lifeboat helmsman Dan Sinclair and volunteer towing the yacht to safety

The skipper of the 26ft yacht ‘The flying TAB NAB’ had sailed from Sandwich with one other person on board and was trying to make his way back against wind and tide.

On trying to start his engine the skipper realised he had no power and wasn’t able to make headway in the conditions. He was able to contact coastguard by dialling 999 from his mobile phone.

The coastguards identified him one mile east of ‘The Butts’ at Kingsdown, where they advised him to sail back out to sea, as he was drifting with the wind and tide closer to the rocky shore under the cliffs.

On reaching the yacht, lifeboat helmsman Dan Sinclair was able to put a crew member aboard the yacht to assess the situation and assist with rigging tow lines.

The yacht was towed into Dover harbour, where the two men were landed safely at Cross Wall Quay.

Mr Sinclair said: “The good weather has encouraged more people out onto our coastal waters. Weather conditions can be unpredictable and it is essential that people take the necessary precautions to make sure that they are safe.

"The crew of the yacht had life jackets and were wearing them, they also had a VHF radio but unfortunately in this instance a flat battery rendered the radio unusable. As soon as they knew they were in difficulty they made the right decision and dialled 999 and asked for help.”

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