The sight of a RIB ‘drifting’ near the entrance to Southampton Water sparked an alert involving Cowes RNLI lifeboat this afternoon.
Solent Coastguards had received a call from someone on the Hampshire shore who had seen a RIB north-east of Bramble Bank, apparently empty and adrift.
Cowes lifeboat, with Patrick Moreton at the helm, raced to investigate and found that the RIB, Double Trouble, was empty but tied to a racing buoy. Before the lifeboat crew could go aboard to investigate further they were hailed by the crew of the yacht Panther. They then learned that a young man on the yacht had left the RIB to go for a sail; he later rejoined the RIB and returned to Cowes.
The lifeboat had left its mooring in Shepards Wharf just after 3 pm and was away from station for just over 40 minutes.
The current Cowes RNLI lifeboat station is a small, temporary facility within Shepards Wharf Marina, but the RNLI is soon to refurbish the old Custom House building, near the mouth of the River Medina, to create a new lifeboat station.
This location will reduce the lifeboat launching time by four minutes, allowing the crew to reach casualties more quickly, which in turn could prove crucial in saving lives out at sea.
For more information or to find out how you can support the Cowes Lifeboat Station Appeal, visit www.rnli.org.uk/cowesappeal website link.
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