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August 20, 2005
Sinking yacht rescued after sending May Day message

A sinking yacht with a damaged keel - as shown in the photo above - was rescued by Burnham-On-Sea RNLI on Saturday August 20th after its skipper issued a May Day message to Coastguards.

The Staines Whitfield was launched at 17:35 in response to a call from the 27ft Yacht called 'Emma' after she lost one of her bilge keels whilst sailing in Bridgwater Bay.

A lifeboat crew member was put onboard the casualty, and the yacht was escorted to the safety of the Burnham Sailing Club's pontoons where auxiliary Coastguard and sailing club members were on hand to help the owner make his vessel safe.

Lifeboat helmsman Jason Coombes said: "The yacht had lost one of its bilge keels and was taking on water. The yachtsman was managing to make way under his own power, so we placed a crew member onboard and escorted him to safety. He seemed pleased to see us."

Click here for video footage of the recovery of the yacht in the River Brue


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