Port St Mary Lifeboat Station - Callouts 26th May 2001
At 03:00 BST Liverpool Coastguard alerted the crew for the all weather lifeboat by pagers. 18 minutes later the relief Trent lifeboat "Inner Wheel II", 14-29, left her moorings to go to the aid of the yacht "Ragtag" with a crew of three adults and three children.
The 35 foot long yacht had left Strangford, Co. Down on the Friday evening and due to near calm conditions had had to motor for most of their passage to Port St Mary. At about 02:00 BST on Saturday morning they passed through the Calf Sound . The weather was now steady rain and fog; visibility ranged at times between a few hundred yards and half a mile. There was a spring tide with high water at 02:00 BST; this meant the yacht was motoring against a strong ebb tide.
The yacht and her crew continued on their course for another mile intending to take a wide berth of the cliffs between the Sound and Port St Mary. However at about 02:30 BST their engine stopped running due to fuel starvation. They were now drifting quickly with the ebb tide towards the south of the Calf and the Chickens Rock. They became caught in the overfalls at the west end of the Wart Bank, which is located a mile east off the Calf and three miles south west of Port St Mary. This left the yacht rolling heavily and caused one of the children to be violently sea sick. Unable to restart their engine, the yachts crew contacted Liverpool Coastguard at 02:45 BST, to request assistance .
VHF radio communication with the yacht was broken and the yachts crew on several occasions talked to the Coastguard using a mobile phone.
The lifeboat quickly located the yacht using radar and were alongside them in just over ten minutes from setting off. By 03:40 BST the yacht was under tow and was brought alongside Port St Mary's Alfred Pier at 04:30 BST without further incident.
The lifeboat was put back on her summer moorings in the outer harbour, ready for service again, 15 minutes later.
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