In their 29th shout of 2013, Tobermory RNLI’s volunteer crew were paged shortly before 4am today, Monday 19th August, to go to the assistance of a yacht aground at Arinagour on the Isle of Coll on 16 August 2013.
The station’s all weather lifeboat, Elizabeth Fairlie Ramsey, launched just after 4am and made her way to the Isle of Coll in strong SE winds.
The yacht, which had three people on board, had dragged its anchor and was aground in the harbour at Arinagour.
In worsening conditions with the wind touching gale force at times, the volunteer crew managed to launch the lifeboat’s daughter craft, a small dinghy known as a Y boat. Two crew members succeeded in passing a rope to the yacht whihc, when secured, enabled it successfully to be taken off the rocks.
The lifeboat then towed the yacht to the safety of a mooring in the bay.
After checking that the yacht was not taking on water, the lifeboat returned to Tobermory where she was refuelled and made ready for service at 0720.
Second Coxswain, James Fairbairns said: ‘This was a challenging rescue in poor conditions and very shallow water. The Y boat was working at its limit but the rescue was carried out quickly and efficiently.’
Theres something about Coll and the Tobermory lifeboat.
Back on 27th January this year, 27th January, in heavy seas out in the Atlantic seven miles west of the Isle of Coll, the Tobermory lifeboat fought for eleven hours to rescue a fishing boat adrift with a broken gear box. This was a prolonged and multi-faceted drama which ended successfully, although there were many times when no one present would have been certain of such an outcome.
The volunteer RNLI crews take on challenges the rest of us have never imagined in conditions few of us have known; and their failure rate is astonishingly low.
Today, Elizabeth Fairlie Ramsey’s 2013 score stands at assistance to 50 people.