Larne RNLI was called to assist the crew of a small motor boat with engine difficulties at the entrance to Larne Harbour on Sunday (July 22).
The Larne volunteer lifeboat crew were preparing for a training session when the call came through at 10.10am.
The all-weather lifeboat and inshore lifeboat launched following the request from Belfast Coastguard to assist the 20ft motor vessel. The casualty vessel had two people on board and was experiencing issues with their engine.
Larne RNLI’s all-weather relief lifeboat the Duke of Windsor, was quickly on scene just north of the entrance to Larne Harbour. The crew quickly established a temporary tow to move the vessel out of the shipping lane to allow a P&O ferry to exit the harbour. A line was then passed from the lifeboat and secured to the casualty vessel to tow the vessel back to Larne Boat Club.
In the shallow waters of Larne Lough the tow was passed to the inshore lifeboat Terry, in order to guide the vessel onto the slipway for recovery.
Weather conditions at the time were excellent with no swell and good visibility.
Speaking after the call out, Frank Healy, Larne RNLI Coxswain said: “We are glad that the crew on the motor vessel knew to contact the Coastguard when they got into difficulty, this is always the right thing to do. If we can be of assistance to anyone, our volunteers are here to help.’
“The extensive training from our volunteer crew kicked in when the call came through and the effective teamwork between both our all-weather and inshore lifeboat crew ensured the casualty vessel was brought ashore safely and efficiently.
“As we are enjoying this fantastic summer weather, we would remind everyone going to sea to always respect the water. Plan ahead and go prepared. Regularly check your vessel and engine and ensure you have enough fuel for your trip. Always wear a lifejacket, carry a means of communication and let someone know where you are going and when you are expected back. Should you get into difficulty or see anyone in distress at sea or on our coastline, call 999 ask for the Coastguard.”
This was the second launch for Larne RNLI in the last five days. On Wednesday, July 18, at 8.50am, the station’s all-weather lifeboat launched following a request by Belfast Coastguard for a flight inbound to Belfast City Airport.
The aircraft was experiencing technical difficulties and both Bangor RNLI’s inshore and Donaghadee RNLI’s all-weather lifeboats were also launched. The aircraft landed safely and all three lifeboats were stood down and returned to station.