* Date: 29/03/2013
* Author: Paul Nicholson
Lifeboat volunteers from Sunderland RNLI Station scrambled into action early this evening (Friday 29 March) to assist three men, after their boat got washed onto rocks after it ran of out of fuel.
A 6.5m ‘Bayliner Capri’ speed-boat with 3 people on board ran out of fuel as it approached the entrance to Sunderland Marina; the boat quickly started to drift and ended up being washed onto rocks next to the marina slipway.
The rescue mission was launched shortly before 6:20pm when Coastguard Officers based at Humber Coastguard Marine Rescue Coordination Centre received a ‘999’ telephone call from one of the crew stating they had ran out of fuel and were drifting close to the entrance of the marina.
Officers immediately contacted Alan Dixon; duty Launching Authority at Sunderland RNLI to request the immediate launch of their Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat Wolseley.
The lifeboat launched ten minutes later with four volunteers onboard under the command of Senior Helmsman Paul Nicholson.
On arrival the lifeboat volunteers discovered that the boat was firmly washed up against the rocks and in danger of becoming damaged. Two of the boats crew were also in the water trying to hold the boat clear.
Lifeboat volunteer Sam Clow swam ashore with the tow-line before making it secure onto the speedboat. After confirming that the vessel had suffered no damage; the lifeboat was able to pull the boat and its crew clear of the rocks.
Once in safe water; a shorter tow was then established and the boat taken back to its own mooring within Sunderland Marina.
One of the crewman who had been in the water from the speedboat was taken into the lifeboat station to be given a medical check-up and warmed up to prevent hypothermia.
Paul Nicholson, Senior Helmsman at Sunderland RNLI said: ‘This incident highlighted the importance of ensuring your vessel has enough fuel onboard to cover the entire trip. It just goes to show how a simple issue of running out of fuel can potentially create a far bigger issue with the boat running aground on rocks and being in danger of becoming damaged.’
As a registered charity the RNLI relies on voluntary donations and legacies from the public for its income.