The RNLI launched two lifeboats to come to the aid of a capsized dinghy.


An afternoon sail turned dangerous when a small sailboat capsized in high winds and choppy seas, and its two occupants were forced to abandon ship.

Humber Coastguard received a report Sunday afternoon from South Shields Sailing Club near Newcastle upon Tyne, that a dinghy had overturned and the two occupants were in the water near South Shields pier.

Tynemouth RNLI quickly launched both of their rescue vessels in response.

As the all weather and inshore lifeboats made their way to the stricken craft, the RNLI received word from the Coastguard that the two sailors had been recovered, but that their boat was drifting, upturned, and posing a potential hazard to other boats sailing the stretch of water.

Navigating choppy seas and winds gusting to 60 miles per hour, the lifeboat crews located the small craft and took it under tow.

As the lifeboats made their way back into the harbour, the dinghy broke free due to the force of the winds. The inshore lifeboat crew managed to get a tow rope attached to it and headed back to the safety of the harbour with the boat in tow, while the all weather lifeboat crew were called to assist a windsurfer who’d been separated from his board some five miles down the coast.

Tynemouth RNLI inshore lifeboat and the capsized dinghy.
Tynemouth inshore lifeboat safely brought the capsized yacht to South Shields beach where they were met by members from the sailing club.

Adrian Don, Spokesman for Tynemouth RNLI, said: “Our lifeboats were requested to launch to what was thought to be two people in the sea in very poor conditions.

“Thankfully the two sailors were quickly recovered from the water by other sailing club members but we still needed to recover the capsized dinghy which was achieved by our volunteer crew members despite the fierce winds and very choppy sea.

“As this incident was ongoing our all weather lifeboat was tasked to another potentially life-threatening situation with a windsurfer who had got into difficulty near Seaburn but again this was thankfully resolved without anyone being injured, or worse.”

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