Yacht ‘Ciconia’ rescued.

Boat launched : Atlantic 85

Date : Saturday 4 May

Launched at : 13:52

Returned at : 14:56

Weather : Strong F7 WSW wind.

On Saturday 4 May the 26ft yacht ‘Ciconia’ lost engine power and was being driven towards rocks at East Wittering in a Force 7 WSW wind. On passage to Birdham pool in Chichester Harbour, the yacht faced a difficult entrance in the windy conditions and a very lumpy sea driven by the strong cross wind. Whilst attempting to tackle this with the engine running and a jib set, the propeller became fouled by a rope and so the then relatively helpless yacht started drifting towards the Wittering shore. The skipper put out a MAYDAY call and Solent Coastguards responded by calling out both Hayling RNLI Lifeboat and the Portsmouth RNLI lifeboat which was already on exercise off Langstone harbour.

Shortly after the launch of the Hayling lifeboat the Coastguard lost VHF contact with the yacht but after a little time, with the lifeboats searching to the East of Hayling, the skipper made a 999 call on his mobile and reported that he was near some rocks about a mile offshore and could see a windmill. The lifeboat team surmised that the vessel was near the Hounds Reef in Bracklesham Bay and so both lifeboats continued to search to the East of Chichester Harbour entrance.

Portsmouth lifeboat located the yacht and put a crewmember on board who made sure that no-one needed medical attention and that the boat was sound and not taking on water. Hayling Lifeboat then put a crewmember on board and together they rolled away the jib sail and prepared a tow line. The Portsmouth crew returned to his lifeboat and the Hayling lifeboat then took the vessel in tow. Heading through a difficult sea and into a head wind they reached the safety of the harbour and took ‘Ciconia’ into Sparkes Marina (pictured) where she was made secure.


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 Thursday, 21 January 2021
High Tide: 05:00 ( 4.10m )
Low Tide: 10:32 ( 2.00m )
High Tide: 17:20 ( 3.90m )
Low Tide: 23:01 ( 2.00m )
Follow us on Facebook