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File photo of Castletownbere RNLI Lifeboat's the Annette Hutton Alamy Stock Photo

Sailors rescued overnight amid gale force winds and driving rain of Storm Betty

The RNLI’s Castletownbere Lifeboat in Cork went to the assistance of two sailors whose yacht got into difficulties on the northern shore of Kenmare Bay.

TWO SAILORS WERE was rescued by the RNLI amid the driving rain of Storm Betty overnight.

Castletownbere Lifeboat in Cork battled gale force winds at 3.30am to go to the assistance of two sailors whose yacht got into difficulties on the northern shore of Kenmare Bay.

They eventually reached the sailors around 6am and spent the morning towing the yacht back to safe harbour.

As last night’s storm became increasingly strong, the 31-foot ketch was dragged away from its anchored position off Dromquinna and the vessel became stuck on rock.

230819 Yacht 2 The yacht which got into trouble off the southwest coast

The two sailors raised the alarm with the Irish Coast Guard’s Marine Research Coordination Centre in Valentia requesting immediate assistance.

Castletownbere’s RNLI lifeboat, the Annette Hutton, was launched at 3.31am under the command of Coxswain Dave Fenton, who was accompanied by five crew and one mechanic.

The Shannon Airport-based Irish Coast Guard Helicopter RESCUE115 was also tasked to assist in the rescue.

The Castletownbere lifeboat faced a three-hour trip to Dromquinna and Fenton described driving rain, strong winds and a large sea swell as the lifeboat travelled westwards, then up the Dursey Sound and across Kenmare Bay.

It was just after 6am when the yacht was located on a rock south of Dromquinna. From there, the volunteer lifeboat crew were able to attach a tow rope and pull the vessel clear.

Both sailors were found to be safe and well while the. yacht was undamaged.

Paul Stevens, Lifeboat Operations Manager at Castletownbere RNLI, complimented the coxswain and crew for their efforts.

“When the crew returns this afternoon, they will have spent over ten hours at sea in challenging conditions – demonstrating their very strong commitment to the lifeboat service,” Stevens said. 

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