Seas and Thank You | 

US sailing couple rescued off Cork coast in ‘deteriorating’ conditions

Castletownbere lifeboat was launched at 10.05 pm to go to the immediate assistance of two sailors who were crossing the Atlantic and had run into challenging weather.
Denise Calnan

The RNLI rescued a US sailing couple caught in deteriorating weather conditions off the south-west coast of the country last night.

Castletownbere lifeboat was launched at 10.05 pm to go to the immediate assistance of two sailors who were crossing the Atlantic and had run into challenging weather.

The Vermont-based couple had set out in their 37-foot yacht from Boston a number of weeks ago and were on route to Scotland.

At 5.30pm yesterday evening, the Irish Coast Guard’s Marine Research Coordination Centre in Valentia advised the yacht to change its course and make for Castletownbere due to deteriorating weather conditions.

But, weather conditions became increasingly challenging throughout the evening.

The Castletownbere lifeboat, ‘Annette Hutton’, was tasked with the call at 10pm and launched immediately under the command of Coxswain Dean Hegarty with crew Dave O’Donovan, David Lynch, Marc O’Hare, Donagh Murphy and Dion Kelly.

The yacht was located 45 minutes later, 10 miles south-west of Castletownbere.

Conditions onscene were reported as Westerly Force 6/7 winds and a three-metre sea swell.

A local fishing boat assisted while the lifeboat escorted the yacht.

Once in calmer waters, a lifeboat volunteer went aboard to assist with berthing the yacht at Castletownbere pier.

Once on dry land, the sailors had refreshments in the lifeboat and expressed their gratitude to the Irish Coast Guard, The Castletownbere lifeboat and the skipper of the local trawler.

One of the sailors said; “It was so reassuring to see the lifeboat coming, we were tired and sea conditions were challenging and we are so delighted to be safe and on dry land now.”

This was Castletownbere lifeboat’s second call-out in two days – on Saturday, the lifeboat was involved in a multi-agency search for a missing person in the Ballylickey area.


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