Local News

Kirkwall RNLI Assist Two Vessels

The Kirkwall RNLI volunteer lifeboat crew assisted two vessels with engine failure and recovered them both safely to Westray on Thursday morning (29th September 2022).

RNLI Kirkwall crew assist the vessels

A RIB (Rigid Inflatable Boat) contacted the Shetland Coastguard for assistance due to engine failure at 9am on Thursday. The Shetland Coastguard tasked the Kirkwall RNLI lifeboat to assist due to the vessel’s location north of Papa Westray.

The RNLI Kirkwall lifeboat swiftly launched to assist the RIB. Whilst on route, a local fisherman in a creel boat sought to assist the vessel but experienced engine difficulties themselves.

On arrival, the RNLI Kirkwall crew found a third vessel; a larger creel boat had also come to the assistance of the casualty vessels and had initiated towing them to safety. The Coxswain made the decision that undertaking a tow was necessary and the safest way to assist the casualties. The volunteer RNLI lifeboat crew established communications with the creel vessel and the lifeboat took over the tow of both vessels to Pierowall Harbour on Westray.

Relief Coxswain Darren Harcus said:

“It was a bit of a headscratcher. It’s not something you anticipate happening but this is why our crews train so hard, so they are prepared for every eventuality.

“Our thanks go to both fishing boats for their assistance, it was just unfortunate that one of the fishermen who went to the aid of the casualty vessel suffered his own mechanical failure. It’s reassuring to know that willingness to help others is alive and well in the islands.

“As always our, crew are available 24/7 and the casualties absolutely did the right thing by contacting the Coastguard to request assistance.”

Categories: Local News

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