Lifeboat volunteers from Sunderland RNLI Station scrambled into action earlier this afternoon (Tuesday 28 May) to assist two men after their boat suffered a fuel problem out to sea off Hendon, Sunderland.
The rescue mission was launched shortly after 04:16pm when Coastguard Officers based at Humber Coastguard Marine Rescue Coordination Centre received an emergency ‘999’ telephone call from the crew stating that their vessel was drifting after suffering a fuel leak half a mile off Hendon, Sunderland.
Officers immediately contacted Sunderland RNLI to request the launch of their Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat Wolseley. A shore based Coast Response Team from Sunderland Coastguard station was also tasked to the scene to assist with communications.
The Coastguard also diverted an RNLI All Weather Lifeboat Pride of the Humber which was on passage back to its usual station at Spurn Point, Humber after being away for routine maintenance.
The All Weather lifeboat arrived on scene minutes later and stood by the stricken vessel until the Atlantic 85 arrived.
The vessel and its crew (two male adults from Shotton Colliery) were quickly located and taken in tow by the inshore lifeboat back to their own moorings at Sunderland Marina.
Clive Fallon, Helmsman at Sunderland RNLI said: ‘We were grateful to our colleagues from Humber Lifeboat Station who diverted from their passage to standby the casualty vessel until we arrived. While weather conditions were favourable for this incident; we urge all maritime traffic to use marine VHF radios rather than rely on mobile phones which cannot be tracked or located by ourselves which can often delay locating a stricken vessel’.
As a registered charity the RNLI relies on voluntary donations and legacies from the public for its income.