Thursday, 31 May 2012


On 7th March 2012, Miroslaw Pozniak, the master of the merchant ship Union Moon, registered in the Cook Islands, was outbound from the port of Belfast when he collided with the inbound ferry Stena Feronia

There were 51 passengers and 47 crew onboard the ferry and six people onboard the cargo ship. Fortunately no one was injured in the collision, however there was substantial damage to both ships.

The two ships were approaching the fairway buoy which marks the beginning of the main channel into Belfast harbour. As the Union Moon passed the Fairway Buoy, she should have altered course to starboard on to an easterly heading, but unexpectedly altered course to port in to the port side of the approaching ferry.

Captain Pozniak pleaded guilty at court in Newtonards on the 12th March 2012 to breaches of the Railways and Transport Act 2003 by being four times over the alcohol limit. At a later hearing he was also charged with failing to keep a proper lookout and to causing serious damage to his own ship and to the Stena Feronia.

Sentencing Mr Pozniac at Downpatrick Crown Court the Judge said:

I believe that any sentence cannot be suspended. This sentence makes it clear that the following of the regulations, both in relation to alcohol and also in relation to the charting and proper adherence to accepted routes, is of vital importance. The ending of your 30 year career and this sentence effectively demonstrate that.

The Master was given a custodial sentence of 12 months on each of the three counts to run concurrently.

Captain Bill Bennett, Area Operations Manager (Survey and Inspection) for the MCA said;
This was a very serious accident. It could so easily have been a dreadful tragedy but fortunately there were no injuries or fatalities. It is a matter of concern to the MCA that misuse of alcohol continues to play a part in a number of maritime accidents.

Monday, 28 May 2012


A 77-year-old man was airlifted to hospital by the Portland Coastguard Helicopter this evening after crashing into the cliffs at Eype near West Bay, Dorset.

Portland Coastguard was notified of the incident at 6.00 pm by Dorset Fire and Rescue.  The report was that a hang glider had crashed into the cliff at Eype, near the Highlands Caravan Park.  Portland Coastguard sent the West Bay and Lyme Regis Coastguard Rescue Teams, who worked with Dorset Fire and Rescue Service and South West Ambulance Service. Upon arriving it became clear that, due to the location of the casualty and the nature of his injuries, rescue by helicopter was the most appropriate method.  The Portland Coastguard helicopter was scrambled and arrived on scene at 6.19 pm.  Having winched the casualty from the cliff, a paramedic trained winchman assessed the casualty on the cliff top and with a suspected dislocated right hip he was transferred to Dorchester County Hospital with the assistance of Wyke Regis Coastguard Rescue Team. 

Mark Rodaway, Portland Coastguard Rescue Coordination Centre Manager said:

“As a result of a concerted multi-agency response the injured casualty was able to be moved to safety to receive prompt medical attention. Portland Coastguard wish the gentleman involved in the incident a speedy recovery.”

Wednesday, 23 May 2012


Two anglers were rescued this afternoon from thick fog after their vessel broke down.
The ‘Elvie’ called Whitby Harbour office at just after 10.30 this morning to say that the vessel had broken down with two people on board. They gave their position as 8km east of Whitby.
The harbour office called Humber Coastguard. Whitby RNLI Lifeboat was asked to go to the vessel’s assistance and the Whitby Coastguard Rescue Team went to harbour to glean as much information about the vessel as they could.
Humber Coastguard attempted to contact the ‘Elvie’ to confirm their location but couldn’t contact them. It later transpired that this was because the vessel’s battery was flat and so their VHF radio wouldn’t work.
Luckily they hadn’t drifted in the fog and the Whitby RNLI Lifeboat quickly found the ‘Elvie’. The lifeboat then brought the vessel back to Whitby Harbour where they were met by the Whitby Coastguard Rescue Team.
Graham Dawson, Humber Coastguard Watch Manager said:
"If you are thinking about heading out in a small boat in thick fog please remember it’s not just about what you can see but whether other vessels can see you. Without radar reflectors small boats may be invisible to large ships.
"Simple checks, like battery charge can make a difference between an enjoyable day’s fishing and a frustrating day waiting to be rescued. Before you set out prepare well so that you can have a safe and enjoyable time. If you do get into difficulty your first call should be to the Coastguard. Use your VHF radio on channel 16 or call 999 on your mobile and ask for the Coastguard.”

Sunday, 20 May 2012


A teenage surfer was rescued from the water at Saltburn-by-the-Sea this afternoon after Skinningrove Coastguard Rescue Team donned water rescue equipment and recovered her to the shore.

The coastguard rescue team were in the area after responding to another incident on the cliffs nearby when they were made aware of a female that had got into difficulty and was unable to make it back to the beach at Saltburn-by-the-Sea.  At the same time, several 999 calls were made to the operations room at Humber Coastguard to report the incident, including from the concerned father of the 17-year-old girl.  Humber Coastguard requested the launch of the Redcar RNLI lifeboat to assist.  Meanwhile, Skinningrove Coastguard donned water rescue equipment and waded into the breakers with a spare lifejacket to recover the surfer.  The teenage surfer was brought ashore exhausted and reunited with her family.

Drew Mahood, Watch Manager, Humber Coastguard said:

“The father of the teenage surfer did absolutely the right thing by dialling 999 and raising the alarm when his daughter got into difficulty.  The choppy seas and large swell meant it was only safe for the trained coastguard rescue team to enter the water with specialist equipment to recover the girl, and luckily they were able to bring her safely ashore within ten minutes of the original call.”


Brixham Coastguard coordinated a search this afternoon for a missing diver who had been diving the wreck of the Benton Castle in Start Bay but did not return to the dive boat.

The diver was reported missing to Brixham Coastguard at midday today by crew on board the dive boat.  They had searched the area for half an hour looking for the missing male diver before raising the alarm.  Brixham Coastguard requested the coastguard helicopter from Portland perform an airborne search of the area, also requesting the launch of the Dartmouth and Torbay RNLI lifeboats and sending coastguard rescue teams from Dartmouth and Berry Head to perform shoreline searches.  A Mayday relay broadcast asking any vessels in the area to keep a sharp lookout was also issued, with several other vessels in the area joining in the search.

David Colmer, Watch Manager, Brixham Coastguard said:

“Following a final sweep of the search area by the helicopter and lifeboats the search for the missing diver has now been stood down and the incident handed over to Devon and Cornwall Police.” 

Saturday, 19 May 2012


Following the discovery of the liferaft still on board the wreck of the ‘Purbeck Isle’ the Coastguard coordinated search for the two remaining crew members from the vessel has now been stood down.

The search for the vessel, which was reported missing at 17.39 on Thursday, had continued this morning, with Exmouth RNLI Lifeboat covering a large search area in Lyme Bay.  At this stage, Coastguards were still working on the possibility that the remaining two missing crew members could have taken to the on board liferaft, but would not have had the ability to call for help. 

At 11.00 this morning, the Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) on board the survey vessel ‘Odyssey Explorer’ was able to enter an area of the wreck of the ‘Purbeck Isle’ and locate the liferaft, thereby confirming that it had not been deployed.

Dorset Police now have primacy for this incident, and together with the Marine Accident Investigation Branch will continue to investigate.

Portland Coastguard Rescue Coordination Centre Manager Mark Rodaway said:
“After a prolonged and extensive three day search, sadly, the time has now passed when we could have hoped that the two remaining crew members from the ‘Purbeck Isle’ would be found alive.  Our final area of investigation was to search for the missing liferaft in the hope that they had been able to board it before the vessel sank, but sadly this new information means that this search will now be terminated.  Our thoughts are with the families of all three crewmen at this difficult time.”

Friday, 18 May 2012


At 17.39, this evening Portland Coastguard received a telephone call from a fisherman with concern for another fishing boat.

The fisherman raised the alarm after concern was raised by their buyers who had not been able to contact the fishing vessel Purbeck Isle DH104

Portland Coastguard commenced a search for the overdue fishing vessel and it’s three crew.

The Coastguard rescue helicopter based at Portland was requested, Portland Bill Coastguard rescue team were called out and the Weymouth RNLI lifeboat was requested to launch. The NCI at Portland Bill are also assisting. The FV Betty G II from Weymouth has also been assisting in the search.

Portland Coastguard has made VHF radio broadcasts to alert other vessels of the search and also to request any vessels that could assist in the search.

That request was responded to by two Royal Navy vessels, the Royal Fleet Auxiliary Wave Ruler, and HMS York, a type 42 Destroyer, and one American Navy supply vessel the 2nd Lt John P Bobo.

No communication has been made with the vessel, or any trace found since the fishing vessel was observed by other fishermen departing the port this morning.

Cindy Rodaway, Watch Manager, Portland Coastguard said:

The Coastguard helicopter commenced a search from the air of known fishing grounds of this vessel as soon as we were alerted. We have also searched all evening utilising the skills of the lifeboat crew and the crews of the Navy warships and the electronic search aids at their disposal.

Friday, 11 May 2012


The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) announced today that 12 foreign flagged ships were under detention in UK ports during March 2012 after failing Port State Control (PSC) inspection.

Latest monthly figures show that there were two new detentions of foreign flagged ships in UK ports during April 2012 and ten vessels remained under detention from previous months. The overall rate of detentions compared with inspections carried out over the last twelve months was 3.31% this is slightly up from Marchs twelve month rate.
Out of the detained vessels four were registered with a flag state listed on the Paris MOU white list, six were registered with a flag state on the grey list none were registered with a flag state on the black list and two were unregistered.

1.In response to one of the recommendations of Lord Donaldsons Inquiry into the prevention of pollution from merchant shipping and in compliance with the EU Directive on Port State Control (2009/16/EC as amended), the Maritime and Coastguard agency (MCA) publishes full details of the foreign flagged vessels detained in UK ports each month.

2. Inspections of foreign flagged ships in UK ports are undertaken by surveyors from the Maritime and Coastguard Agency. Where a ship is found to be deficient or lacks the required documentation, Maritime and Coastguard Agency surveyors can take a range of actions leading to detention in serious cases. The UK is part of a regional agreement on port state control known as the Paris Memorandum of Understanding on Port State Control (Paris MOU) and information on all ships that are inspected is held centrally in an electronic database known as Thetis. This allows the ships of flags with poor detention records to be targeted for future inspection.

3. Detained ships have to satisfy surveyors that remedial work has been carried out before they are allowed to leave port.

4. When applicable the list includes those passenger craft prevented from operating under the provisions of the EU Directive on Mandatory Surveys for the safe operation of regular Ro-Ro ferry and high speed passenger craft services (1999/35/EU).

Notes on the list of detentions
• Full details of the ship.
• The accompanying detention list shows ships name, the flag state and the ships International Maritime Organization (IMO) number which is unchanging throughout the ships life and uniquely identifies it.
• Company.
• The company shown in the vessels Safety Management Certificate or the party otherwise believed to be responsible for the safety of the ship at the time of inspection.
• Classification Society.
• The list shows the Classification Society responsible for classing the ship and not necessarily the party issuing and/or carrying out surveys for certificates relevant to the defect found.
• Recognised Organisation.
• The organisation - responsible for conducting the statutory surveys: and issuing statutory certificates, (on behalf of the Flag State).
• Defects.
The list gives a summary of the main grounds for detention and includes information where the ship has been released to sail to another port for repairs.
Vessels detained in April included:

A 7,367 GT Refrigerated Cargo Vessel was detained because the vessels stability records did not show compliance with requirements and had not been calculated in accordance with the stability book.


Date and Place of detention: - 03 April 2012 Tyne
Vessel name: - Mikhail Srekalavoskiy (Bulk Carrier)
GT: - 16,253
IMO No: - 8131881
Flag: - Russia
Company: - Murmansk Shipping Co
Classification Society: - Russian Maritime Register of Shipping (RMRS)
Recognised Organisation: - Russian Maritime Register of Shipping (RMRS)
Recognised Organisation for ISM: - Russian Maritime Register of Shipping (RMRS)
Summary: -14 deficiencies 3 grounds for detention

The vessel was detained in Tyne for ten days because the starboard lifeboat davit was corroded through; the engine room deckhead was also corroded through and had been repaired with tape; the identified deficiencies marked ISM are objective evidence of a failure of the implementation of the ISM code. Other deficiencies identified included: the passage plan was not berth to berth; the engine room vent cannot be closed properly and securing devices for engine room hatches were seized; the hose on the extinguisher in the CO² room was disconnected; the paint locker extinguisher had no pressure and several extinguishers had over pressure.
The vessel was released from detention on 12 April 2012.

Date and Place of detention: 18 April 2012 Southampton
Vessel name: - Mogami Reefer (Refrigerated Cargo)
GT: - 7,367
IMO No: - 9184548
Flag: - Panama
Company: - Honma Senpaku
Classification Society: - Class NK (NKK)
Recognised Organisation: - Class NK (NKK)
Recognised Organisation for ISM: Class NK (NKK)
Summary: -7 deficiencies two grounds for detention

The vessel was detained in Southampton for one day because the vessels stability records did not show compliance with the requirements and were not calculated in accordance with the stability book; and the passage plans were not in accordance with IMO resolution A (893) and the chart corrections for relevant charts had not been done. In addition other deficiencies identified were: some fire doors were hooked or tied back; engine room lifting equipment was being used with broken parts; and the lifejackets in the foscle were obstructed by loose equipment.
The vessel was released from detention on 18 April 2012.


Date and Place of detention: - 08 March 2012 Belfast
Vessel name: - Union Moon (General Cargo)
GT: - 1,543
IMO No: - 8416839
Flag: - Cook Islands
Company: - Continental Shipping As
Classification Society: - International Naval Survey Bureau (INSB)
Recognised Organisation: - N/A
Recognised Organisation for ISM: - N/A
Summary: - five deficiencies three grounds for detention

The vessel was detained in Belfast following a collision with a cross channel ferry which caused significant damage to Union Moons bow. Following the collision the master was put into police custody for being in breach of the drug and alcohol policy. In addition there were various fire doors with inoperable latches. The vessel was still detained at 30 April 2012.

Date and Place of detention: - 20 March 2012 Thurrock
Vessel name: - River Spirit (General Cargo)
GT: - 794
Imo No: - 8420921
Flag: - Panama
Company: - Caribbean Ship Services
Classification Society: - Panama Maritime Documentation Services (PMDS)
Recognised Organisation: - N/A
Recognised Organisation for ISM: - N/A
Summary: - nine deficiencies three grounds for detention

The vessel was detained in Thurrock because the safe manning document was not fit for the intended voyage to Miami (USA), the minimum safe manning document did not show all the relevant members of the crew, the safety management certificate (SMC) was missing and the deficiencies identified as ISM are objective evidence or a serious failure or a lack of effectiveness of the implementation of the ISM code. In addition various certificates were missing: the Safety Equipment Certificate (SEC); the Safety Construction Certificate (Saf- Con); the Safety Radio Certificate (RAD); and the load line (ILL). The gangway did not have a safety net.
The vessel was still detained at 30 April 2012.

Date and Place of detention: - 26 March 2012 Aberdeen
Vessel name: - Star 1 (General Cargo)
GT: - 3,186
IMO No: - 8702862
Flag: - Panama
Company: - TMS Ship Management GMBH &Co
Classification Society: - LR
Recognised Organisation: - Lloyds Register (LR)
Recognised Organisation for ISM: - Germanischer Lloyd (GL)
Summary: - ten deficiencies two grounds for detention.

The vessel was detained in Aberdeen because there was one discharge valve in the engine room port bottom platform that was damaged and had been temporarily repaired, also there were cockroaches in the galley. Other deficiencies identified included: the Safety Equipment Certificate (SEC) expired on 11 March 2012; the masters Certificate of Competency (COC) was not endorsed by the flag state; the gangway did not have proper handrails; the hospital bathroom was dirty and in an unsatisfactory condition and there was an oil leak from the N°2 generator which was being collected in a bucket.
The vessel was still detained at 30 April 2012.

Date and Place of detention: - 26 March 2012 Kyle of Lochalsh
Vessel name: - Sordyroy (Well Boat)
GT - 611
IMO No: - 6700652
Flag: - Norway
Company: - DBS Consultancy As
Classification Society: - N/A
Recognised Organisation None
Recognised Organisation for ISM: - Det Norske Veritas (DNV)
Summary: - 21 Deficiencies one ground for detention

The vessel was detained in Kyle of Lochalsh for 11 days because the identified deficiencies marked ISM are indicative of a serious failure of the implementation or lack of effectiveness of the ISM code. Other deficiencies identified included: the galley/mess fire door was tied open; the switchboard room fire door had a faulty self closure; the engine room access door was not self closing; there were no passage plans available ; there were no local charts available and the engine room fire alarm was smothered to make it silenced.
The vessel was released from detention on 5 April 2012.

Date and Place of detention: - 12 February 2012 Avonmouth
Vessel Name: - Seahawk (General Cargo)
GT: - 1,959
IMO No: - 8906250
Flag: - Barbados
Company: - Torbulk Ltd
Classification Society: - Lloyds Register of Shipping (LR)
Recognised Organisation: - Lloyds Register of Shipping (LR)
Recognised Organisation for ISM: - Lloyds Register of Shipping (LR)
Summary: - 8 deficiencies one ground for detention

The vessel was detained in Avonmouth for 54 days following an engine room fire and total loss of power. On releasing the anchor to prevent drift, the cable failed, the other anchor crown was missing and the vessel was towed to Avonmouth. The inspection revealed objective evidence of the failure of the implementation of the ISM code.
The vessel was released from detention on 5 April 2012

Date & Place of detention: - 1 November 2011 Marchwood Southampton
Vessel name: - Wadestone (Cargo Barge)
GT: - 274
IMO No: - 7830545
Flag: - Sierra Leone
Company: - Britannia Shipping Ltd
Classification Society: - Not Known
Summary: - Nine deficiencies seven grounds for detention
The vessel was detained in Marchwood because the vessel had suffered serious hull damage resulting in the flooding of the forepeak tank space; the vessel had no valid certification on board from the flag state; there was no loadline certificate on board or approved stability book from the flag state. Other deficiencies were one crewman had no endorsement for equivalency on his certificate of competency; the master had no valid certification for the type of craft and the vessel had no passage plan.
The vessel was still detained at 30 April 2012.

Date & Place of detention: 10 October 2011 Portland
Vessel name: - Westwind II
GT: - 3,539
IMO No: 8515635
Flag: - Panama
Company: -Reederei Karl-Heinz
Classification Society: - Turku Lloyd (TL)
Summary: - 16 deficiencies 16 grounds for detention

The vessel was detained in Portland because it did not have valid certificates on board; the main engine did not have guards around moving parts; some fire fighting equipment had corroded wires securing the fittings; lifeboat boarding ladder ropes were rotted and unsafe; identified deficiencies were objective evidence of a serious failure or lack of effectiveness of the implementation of the ISM Code.
The vessel was still detained at 30 April 2012.

Date and Place of detention: - 8 November 2010 Birkenhead
Vessel Name: - MOST SKY General Cargo
GT: - 1,972
IMO No: - 9389370
Flag: - Panama
Company: - ER Em Denizcilik
Classification Society: - Russian Maritime Register of Shipping (RMRS)
Summary: - 12 deficiencies four grounds for detention

The vessel was detained in Birkenhead because the engine room was very dirty, there were fuel oil leaks and a major non conformity was identified with respect to the lack of maintenance of the ship and equipment. Other deficiencies identified included: the crew/officers records of rest were not signed; the crew accommodation was no longer provided with steam heating; the galley needed cleaning; there was insufficient fruit and vegetables on board; the crew showers and toilets were dirty and the shower curtains missing and the laundry washing facilities were inadequate. In addition the lifejacket lights were out of date; the aft deck was slippery underneath the deck generator and several fire doors were tied open.
The vessel was still detained at 30 April 2012.

Date and Place of detention: - 9 September 2011 Liverpool
Vessel Name: - DYCKBURG
GT: - 3,660
IMO No: - 9195913
Flag: - Antigua & Barbuda
Company: - Werse Bereederungs Gmbh
Classification Society: - Lloyds Register of Shipping (LR)
Recognised Organisation: - Germanischer Lloyd (GL)
Summary: - 17 deficiencies one ground for detention

The vessel was detained in Liverpool because there were a large number of Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) related deficiencies which were objective evidence of a serious failure or lack of effectiveness of implementation of the ISM code on board the vessel. Other deficiencies identified included: the main engine was defective; also the engine room was very oily in some areas; the five year service on the immersion suit in the engine room had expired; there was no evidence that the freefall lifeboat had been manoeuvred in the water within the last 3 months also there was no evidence that the freefall lifeboat had been freefall launched within the last 6 months; in addition the deck officer was not familiar with launching the starboard life raft by davit.
The vessel was still detained at 30 April 2012.

Date and Place of detention: 4 March 2010 – Lowestoft
Vessel Name: - CIEN PORCIENTO (General Cargo)
GT: - 106
IMO No: - 8944446
Flag: - Unregistered
Company: - Open Window Inc
Classification Society: - Unclassed
Recognised Organisation: - Not applicable
Recognised Organisation for ISM: - Not applicable
Summary: - 30 deficiencies seven grounds for detention

The vessel was detained in Lowestoft because the main fire pump was inoperative and there was no alternative fire pump outside the machinery space. There were insufficient liferafts, the sanitary water system was inoperative and there was no fresh running water to the galley, pantry and shower room. There were no nautical publications and charts were incomplete for the operational area.
Other deficiencies found were insufficient provisions for the intended voyage and medicines were out of date. In addition the following items were found to be missing:
distress flares; line throwing appliances; lifebuoys; life jackets with lights; immersion suits; satellite (Emergency Positioning Indicating Radio Beacon) (EPIRB); fire extinguishers and the fire hose nozzle.
The vessel was still detained at 30 April 2012.


The operation to remove the wreck of the cargo ship MV Carrier, which ran aground near Llanddulas, North Wales, was completed this week. It has taken contractors, PGC, less than six weeks to remove the wreck and all scrap materials from the vessel have now been removed from the site. However residual work to make the site, and immediate surrounding area, safe for public use will need completion. Speed restrictions on the A55 will remain in place and the cycle path closed until a full safety assessment is made next week.

Although there was a small release of diesel fuel at the time of the incident, tests conducted on marine life, mussels and starfish from various locations by the Environment Agency Wales have been analysed throughout the operation and have found no traces of contamination.

The vessel was carrying a cargo of limestone and had bunkers onboard of 40,000 litres of marine diesel fuel at the time of the incident. Holyhead Coastguard coordinated the rescue of the seven crewmen who were airlifted from the ship by a navy and RAF helicopter.

Although the A55 was closed when the vessel first beached, North Wales Police were able to quickly re-open it and it remained open throughout the clear-up operation.

Colin Mulvana, Deputy to the Secretary of States Representative for Maritime Salvage and Intervention said

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency, Environment Agency Wales, North Wales Police and local authorities have worked with the salvage contractors, PGC Demolition to ensure that the wreck has been removed with minimal pollution and disruption.

Dave Edwell, from Environment Agency Wales added:

Our officers have been on site over the last four weeks working closely with the contractors to oversee the demolition and to make sure the local environment is protected. Fortunately, the environmental impact of this incident has been minimal, and this is a result of the swift action taken by all agencies and contractors involved.

ACC Pritchard, North Wales Police praised the excellent working relationships between the multi-agency working group set up to managing the salvage of the MV Carrier and was pleased the operation was completed ahead of schedule and with minimal impact locally. Safety remains a priority however and ACC Pritchard asked the closure of the cycle path and speed restrictions be observed until the site is fully reopened.

Thursday, 10 May 2012


Following an overnight search of Swanage Bay, a yacht skipper was found in the sea but later declared deceased after setting out for shore from a yacht in a tender.

At 11.46pm on Wednesday night, Portland Coastguard received a 999 call from crew members of the 47 foot sailing yacht Musketeer of Stutton who were on the beach at Studland awaiting the skipper of Musketeer to return them to the vessel by inflatable dinghy after an evening ashore. They reported that the dinghy had not returned after earlier transferring some other crew members back to the yacht. They were concerned that the outboard engine may have broken down and the tender with the skipper on board was now drifting across Poole Bay.

Swanage RNLI All Weather and Inshore Lifeboats, the Coastguard Rescue Helicopter from Lee on Solent, Swanage & Poole Coastguard Rescue Teams and Dorset Police searched along the shoreline and the water in Poole and Studland Bays. An upturned inflatable dinghy was found marked with the name Musketeer and shortly afterwards, the man was found unconscious in the water without a lifejacket.

He was recovered to the lifeboat then airlifted by the Coastguard rescue helicopter to Poole helicopter landing site to be met by Dorset Police, Poole Coastguard Rescue Officers and South West Ambulance who transferred him to hospital. Despite attempts to resuscitate him, the man could not be revived. Swanage RNLI Lifeboat assisted the remaining crew to return the yacht back to Poole Harbour.

Maddy Davey, Portland Coastguard Watch Manager said,

We would like to express our deepest sympathy for the family and friends of the deceased at this difficult time. As summer approaches we want all boat users to keep safe when heading out on the water. Please wear your lifejacket on deck and when you are on a tender because sadly, these tragic accidents do happen even on short trips.


Aberdeen Coastguard can confirm that a helicopter has been forced to ditch into the North Sea 30 miles east of Aberdeen. 14 people on board have been confirmed to be in a liferaft and rescue units are now on scene.

Aberdeen Coastguard was alerted at 12.15pm that a Bond helicopter was on route from Aberdeen to Maersk Resilient and then onwards to ENSCO 102, (jack up drilling rigs) when they broadcast an alert that they were forced to ditch the aircraft into the sea.

Coastguard ends search in Belfast Lough

Belfast Coastguard have ended their search for the child reported to have gone overboard from a ferry in Belfast Lough at 6pm last night.
Control of the incident has now been passed to the Police Service of Northern Ireland. The Coastguard will assist the Police with another search of the shoreline at low water tonight. The RNLI lifeboat from Bangor will also search the lough and vessels coming in and out of the harbour are asked to keep a sharp lookout.


At 06.30am Falmouth Coastguard received a call from the MRCC Turku, Finland.

The Finnish Coastguard reported to Falmouth that they had received a satellite telephone call from a sailor aboard a Finnish registered yacht reporting that himself and a friend were in a distress situation aboard their 35 foot yacht.

The yacht and the two sailors departed the Azores on the 7th May.

Their position is 840 nautical miles from the Isles of Scilly which is within the search and rescue region of the United Kingdom.

Falmouth Coastguard are coordinating the incident to rescue the two men.

A broadcast was made by Falmouth using EGC (Enhanced Group Calling) via satellite to all ships that may be near to the distressed yacht.

They received several responses from commercial ships who offered assistance.

Two tankers that were nearest have been requested to divert to the last known position of the yacht to help the sailors. They are the Stolt Invention and the Norgas Invention.

ARCC Kinloss made arrangements for a VC10 aircraft from RAF Brize Norton to go to the position to provide surveillance and radio communications link for Falmouth Coastguard.

The sailors have now activated their EPIRB (Emergency position Indicating Radio Beacon) which enables the Coastguard to receive an accurate position of the distressed yacht.

Andy Cattrell, Watch Manager, Falmouth Coastguard said:

After issuing our EGC Broadcast, we received several offers of assistance from commercial vessels to go to the aid of these distressed sailors.

The nearest vessel Norgas Invention should reach the vessel within the next couple of hours.


Belfast Coastguard is continuing to coordinate a search for a missing child who is believed to have fallen from a ferry in bound to Belfast from Scotland.

Last night the Coastguard received a call from a ferry reporting that two people were in the water in Belfast Lough. One person was recovered by the pilot boat at 6.25 pm, 15 minutes after the alarm was raised and was taken to hospital.

Last nights search involved RNLI lifeboats from Bangor and Donaghadee, an Irish Rescue helicopter, police helicopter, fast rescue craft from two ferries, tugs and a pilot boat. Coastguard rescue teams from Bangor and Portmuck also searched the shoreline of Belfast Lough. This search of Victoria Channel and Belfast Lough was suspended at 10pm last night and resumed at first light this morning with RNLI lifeboats from Bangor and Donaghadee, three Police Rhibs, the fishery protection vessel Banrion Uladh and harbour patrol boats. Coastguard rescue teams from Port Muck and Bangor will also resume their shoreline search at 8am.

Steve Carson, Belfast Coastguard watch Manager says:
There was an extensive search last night that sadly did not find the missing child so we are looking again for them this morning.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012


Three men were rescued from an angling boat they had just bought when it broke down in the Menai Strait.

Holyhead Coastguard received a 999 phone call from one of the men on board the 28 foot boat at just after midnight today. He explained that the engine had cut out and they were drifting towards rocks.

Because the crew weren’t sure exactly where they were Penmon, Bangor and Llandwrog Coastguard Rescue Team were sent to the area. The RNLI inshore lifeboat from Beaumaris and the All weather lifeboat from Porthdinllaen were asked to attend alongside the RAF rescue helicopter from Valley. Using the blue flashing lights from Coastguard vehicles Holyhead Coastguard were able to establish their exact location. The crew were lifted to safety and taken to hospital by the rescue helicopter. The Beaumaris lifeboat towed their vessel ashore to Caernarfon.

Barry Priddis Holyhead Watch Manager said:

“This crew had recently bought to boat but what they hadn’t acquired were waterproof clothing, lifejackets, flares or training in how to use a vhf radio. They also had no way of knowing where they were.

“Luckily there were in sight of land when the engine failed so they were able to make a mobile phone call but a fun fishing trip could easily have turned to tragedy. 

“If you are buying a boat please think about the other equipment you’ll need. We recommend that you wear a lifejacket at all times when on deck. These should be well maintained and have a sprayhood, light and whistle. You should also have DSC or vhf radio communications and know how to use it.”


Notes to Editors

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Sunday, 6 May 2012


A man was rescued from mud this afternoon after his stepfather called the coastguard to say his stepson had become stuck in mud whilst walking towards Flamborough and the sea was only two metres away.

Humber Coastguard received the 999 call at just after 4pm today. Coastguard Rescue teams from Filey, Bridlington, Scarborough and Burniston, who specialise in mud and cliff rescue, were sent to the scene and the RNLI lifeboats from Filey and Flamborough were asked to attend.

The man was found in a very inaccessible location he was reached by a Coastguard Rescue Team from Filey who managed to extract him from the mud. Because of the incoming tide he had to be evacuated by sea and so was taken by lifeboat to the shore at Filey where he received medical assistance.

Graham Dawson Humber Coastguard Watch Manager said;
“Incoming tides can create areas of quicksand and, like this afternoon, it’s a race against time for help to reach you before the tide comes in fully.

“If you become stuck in mud try and spread your weight as much as possible. If you have a mobile phone dial 999 and ask for the coastguard. Avoid moving and stay as calm as you can. You should also discourage others from attempting to rescue you because without the proper equipment they could become stuck too.”


Notes to Editors

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An early morning dog walk at Barton on Sea took an unexpected turn when a female dog walker became stuck in the mud at just after 9.30am today.

Solent Coastguard were alerted to the incident just below Nash Farm Holiday Park by Hampshire Fire and Rescue. They sent specialist Coastguard Rescue mud extraction teams from Lymington and Southbourne to the scene and asked the RNLI Inshore lifeboat from Mudeford to attend.

Using their specialist skills the Coastguard Rescue teams were able to extract the woman from the mud. She was brought ashore at Chewton Bunny by the RNLI lifeboat where she received medical attention from the ambulance service. The dog, who wasn’t stuck in the mud was brought ashore unharmed.

Mike O’Sullivan Solent Coastguard Watch Manager said;

“If you become stuck in mud try and spread your weight as much as possible. If you have a mobile phone dial 999 and ask for the coastguard. Avoid moving and stay as calm as you can. You should also discourage others from attempting to rescue you because without the proper equipment they could become stuck too.”


Notes to Editors

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At just before 2pm yesterday Yarmouth Coastguard received a call from a member of the public reporting a possible explosive device on the beach, at Hopton, Norfolk, just below Potters Holiday Centre.

Coastguard Rescue Officers from Lowestoft and Gorleston were sent to inspect it and reported that the object was 17 inches in length and 4 inches in diameter and was wedged into a metal sea defence below the high water mark. It was also partly covered in sand.

Yarmouth Coastguard contacted the Joint Services Explosive Ordnance Disposal team and forwarded them photos of the device taken by the Coastguard Rescue teams. They believe that it is Ordnance and so have arranged for an Army EOD team from Colchester to deal with the device. They are expected to be on scene at  midday today and the tide should be low enough for them to access the device by 1400 BST (actual Low water in the area 1600 BST).

Because the device is close to the holiday centre, Police will be on scene with Coastguard Rescue teams from Lowestoft and Gorleston to ensure members of the public are kept at a safe distance. Local Council Emergency Planning Officers are arranging for sandbags to protect property.

Mario Siano Yarmouth Coastguard Watch Manager said;

“Until EOD get on scene and have a chance to inspect the device we won’t know whether it is an unexploded bomb or another device. Until that assessment is made members of the public should keep a safe distance and follow the instructions of the Police and Coastguard Rescue Officers.”


Notes to Editors

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Saturday, 5 May 2012


At just before 1pm Holyhead Coastguard received a 999 call from a vigilant member of the public reporting that two kayakers were in the water 1.5 miles off Point Lynas.

The RNLI All-weather lifeboat from Moelfre and RAF rescue helicopter from Valley went straight to the scene. Holyhead Coastguard broadcast an alert to all vessels in the area. When the lifeboat and helicopter arrived on scene they found that a group of three kayakers, who had heard the broadcast,had gone to help the kayakers in difficulty. The second group of kayakers had a vhf radio and smoke flare with them and so were able to talk directly to the rescue helicopter and guide it in.

Both kayakers were rescued from the sea by the helicopter. One needed medical attention and so was taken directly to hospital. The group of kayakers who went to help were met by Moelfre Coastguard Rescue Team and thanked for their assistance.

Mark Craddock, Holyhead Coastguard Watch Manager said;

“From this afternoon’s incident you can see why we recommend that kayakers should carry hand held flares, vhf radio and a charge mobile phone. The two kayakers had spent 40 minutes in the water trying to get back to their kayaks and attract attention. Luckily for them they were spotted by a member of the public at the Port Eilian Caravan site and so we were able to get them the help they needed.

“Kayakers should tell the Coastguard and a shore contact when they are going out and where they are going so we know where to start looking if they don’t return. They should also check weather and tides before they go out.”


Notes to Editors

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Wednesday, 2 May 2012


A man was transferred to hospital by helicopter today after sustaining a knee injury and being unable to make it back to shore in Earnse Bay on the western side of Walney Island near Barrow-in-Furness.

A member of the public contacted Liverpool Coastguard at 5.40 pm to let them know that they could see a man and a dog approximately half a mile out, surrounded by water at the top of Earnse Bay.   He observed that the man looked to be struggling but was not making his way back to the shore or out of the water.

Liverpool Coastguard sent the Walney Coastguard Rescue Team to the scene, along with requesting the launch of the Duddon Inshore Lifeboat and scrambling a helicopter from RAF Valley.  Once the coastguard rescue team arrived on scene they reported that the man was face down in the water and appeared to be unresponsive.  At this point, Liverpool Coastguard also requested an ambulance attend.  The casualty was then brought ashore by the lifeboat and paramedics worked on him until the helicopter arrived.  Once transferred to the helicopter he was taken to Furness General Hospital.  By the time he arrived at the hospital the man was reported to be conscious and speaking to the helicopter crew.  The dog is currently being looked after by local Police.

Liverpool Coastguard Watch Manager Paul Parkes said:

“This man owes his life to the quick thinking member of the public who spotted him in difficulty and reported it to us.  It appears that he had suffered a knee injury that meant he was unable to make it to shore and when the coastguard rescue team located him and found him face down in the water they feared the worst.  Luckily their attempts at giving CPR and the work that the paramedics and the helicopter crew did to stabilise him were successful and by the time he was transferred to hospital he had regained consciousness and was able to talk.  We are so grateful to the member of the public who raised the alarm and would ask anyone who sees anyone at the coast who they believe to be in difficulty to dial 999 and ask for the Coastguard.”