Dartmouth-in-a-storm

Byline: Dart RNLI inshore lifeboat launched twice within two hours after severe storm force winds hit Dartmouth on the morning of December 23rd
Page Content: In extreme weather our volunteer lifeboat crew are principally concerned with saving lives rather than property. However, when moored vessels break free there is a real possibility of boatmen taking undue risks to save their vessels or of injury to those living on their boats in the harbour.
At its height the roaring wind lifted the surface of the river in the harbour and threw it in white spiralling plumes sixty feet in the air.
The initial call out followed a report that a man in a small dinghy could be in trouble as he tried to secure a thirty four foot yacht that had snapped the mooring lines holding her to the deep water pontoon. When the lifeboat reached the scene it was apparent that the boatman was safe but the boat was surging forward in the wind and was in danger of holing itself on the steel buoy securing the pontoon. Extra lines were attached and the yacht was made secure before the lifeboat returned to station.
Forty five minutes later the pagers sounded again. A forty five foot Moody yacht had snapped its bow chain and was in danger of breaking free. With the assistance of the Dart Harbour Patrol the chain was replaced and the boat was secured. The lifeboat volunteers were then tasked to check on a further four yachts that had broken their mooring lines on the Visitors pontoon and to re-secure them. Finally the Coastguard directed them to the seventy foot water bowser, the Boy Oasis. She was attached to the Fairmile, the WW2 Heritage ship, and when the up-river line of the Boy Oasis parted in the storm she was dragging the two boats into the main channel. Working with the Dart Harbour Patrol boat the crew were able to re-attach a line and to tow the vessels back to their mooring position.
These two launches mean that this year has been the third busiest in the Dart RNLI’s brief six year history.
Byline: Dart RNLI inshore lifeboat launched twice within two hours after severe storm force winds hit Dartmouth on the morning of December 23rd
Page Content: In extreme weather our volunteer lifeboat crew are principally concerned with saving lives rather than property. However, when moored vessels break free there is a real possibility of boatmen taking undue risks to save their vessels or of injury to those living on their boats in the harbour.
At its height the roaring wind lifted the surface of the river in the harbour and threw it in white spiralling plumes sixty feet in the air.
The initial call out followed a report that a man in a small dinghy could be in trouble as he tried to secure a thirty four foot yacht that had snapped the mooring lines holding her to the deep water pontoon. When the lifeboat reached the scene it was apparent that the boatman was safe but the boat was surging forward in the wind and was in danger of holing itself on the steel buoy securing the pontoon. Extra lines were attached and the yacht was made secure before the lifeboat returned to station.
Forty five minutes later the pagers sounded again. A forty five foot Moody yacht had snapped its bow chain and was in danger of breaking free. With the assistance of the Dart Harbour Patrol the chain was replaced and the boat was secured. The lifeboat volunteers were then tasked to check on a further four yachts that had broken their mooring lines on the Visitors pontoon and to re-secure them. Finally the Coastguard directed them to the seventy foot water bowser, the Boy Oasis. She was attached to the Fairmile, the WW2 Heritage ship, and when the up-river line of the Boy Oasis parted in the storm she was dragging the two boats into the main channel. Working with the Dart Harbour Patrol boat the crew were able to re-attach a line and to tow the vessels back to their mooring position.
These two launches mean that this year has been the third busiest in the Dart RNLI’s brief six year history.