Fishermen rescued from their sinking boat.

Boats launched: Atlantic 85 and D-class

Date : Saturday 5th May

Launched at : 17:58

Returned at: 18:30

Weather: ENE Force 4/5

A fishing boat in the vicinity of Dean Tail buoy was trying to raise it’s anchor. The skipper was using his engine to try and break out the anchor when the rope got wrapped around the propeller. This pulled the boat round so that waves were breaking over the stern. The skipper went to the stern to try to clear the propeller which made the stern lower in the water and a larger wave swamped the boat which within seconds capsized throwing the two men into the water.  They had no time to make a Mayday call and neither were wearing life jackets which were later found in the boat. Fortunately an air pocket in the bow stopped the boat from completely sinking and they clung to the small section of the boat that was above the water. A gaff rigged Cornish Shrimper saw the capsize and went to their help but they were in the water for some 15 minutes so that when the boat took them on board they were already very cold.

The skipper of the shrimper contacted the Solent Coastguard using a mobile phone and both the lifeboats were paged. The Atlantic 85 was sent to pick up the fishermen and the D boat to pinpoint the position of the sunken fishing boat. Both fishermen were suffering from hypothermia and were brought to Sparks Marina where an ambulance met them. Having spent 45 minutes in a warm ambulance they were discharged and came to the lifeboat station.

The D boat managed to locate the partially sunken fishing boat and took it in tow as the tide had pushed it south of the shipping channel. It made slow progress against the wind and the tide and so the Atlantic 85, having dropped off the casualties, went to assist the D boat. By skillful use of towrope and engines, the boat was dragged to the surface with most of the water ejected over the stern and it was then towed back to the lifeboat station. In discussion with the owners it was decided to take the boat to Sparks Marina where it could be craned out.

This incident had a most satisfactory outcome to what could easily have been a tragic accident and both fishermen agreed that wearing life jackets in future would be essential.

The two lifeboats returned to the station and were made ready for further service.


To view the video for the above service please Click Here.


Service Numbers 2019

Total Launches: 84
Atlantic 85: 42
D-Class: 42

Services Totals

2015 - 67
2014 -77
2013 - 86
2012 - 77

Tide Times
Tide Times & Heights for Chichester Harbour (Entrance) on Monday, 21 September 2020
High Tide: 02:31 ( 5.00m )
Low Tide: 08:02 ( 0.50m )
High Tide: 15:01 ( 5.00m )
Low Tide: 20:23 ( 0.70m )
Follow us on Facebook