sailing enthusiast puts RNLI skills to use in Atlantic
Trainee Lifeboat Helmsman Nathan Meager didn't expect to be putting
his RNLI skills to use during the Transatlantic Tall Ships Race
- but that's what happened.
and 22 other crew were onboard the vessel 'Rona II' and were making
their way under engine to the start line in the Atlantic for the
race from Halifax Nova Scotia in Canada to Le Havre in France.
As they were proceeding they passed one of their competitors barely
making way. After throwing them a Rona II t-shirt and wrist bands
as gifts they discovered the boat didn't have enough fuel to make
it to the start line and were trying to sail in very little wind.
After a quick fuel calculation onboard Rona II, a tow was offered
to the vessel called 'Peter Van Danzig'. Nathan was able to use
his RNLI towing knowledge to help rig a secure tow and set up the
correct day shapes in Rona II's rigging to indicate that a tow was
many hours, a larger vessel which was also participating in the
race took over the tow as they had a greater fuel reserve and were
able to make better speed.
Nathan told Burnham-On-Sea.com: "I was told by a previous competitor
in the race that we probably wouldn't see another vessel the whole
way across the Atlantic, so to see a couple of boats and to have
to put my RNLI helmsman training to use was quite a surprise!"!
Lifeboat Operations Manager Matt Davies added: "We are proud
of Nathan and his achievement, and his dedication helps to demonstrate
the high calibre of our volunteers."
has volunteered for over 17 years with the Rona Sailing Project,
an initiative that helps develop young people from all walks of
life and abilities, by positively changing their lives.
three custom-built sail training yachts, the project runs sail training
voyages for people aged between 14-25 usually around Europe and
the UK, but every 8-10 years the fleet goes transatlantic - and
Nathan took part in this year's challenge.
was given the responsibility for organising all the food and logistics
for a 154-day adventure for 23 people across numerous countries
and over six legs.
with the team at the end of the sailing challenge
saw these super dolphins following their boat, photo: Milo Mulvagh