In an emergency call 999 and ask for the Coastguard

Whitstable’s Atlantic 85 Lifeboat Lewisco was launched at 11.16am on Saturday 2nd July following a report of a capsized vessel in the entrance to the Swale.

The lifeboat crew located the casualty vessel, a 17-foot Drascombe Lugger completely upturned with a 27-foot long motor cruiser Rowena ‘standing by’ the stricken craft in the vicinity of the Horse Sands to the north east of Faversham Creek. The single male occupant from the capsized craft was now onboard the Rowena.

The Rowena which had initially gone to assist the ‘Lugger’ was now also disabled with the vessel’s sail caught around her propeller.

The lifeboat crew managed to ‘right’ the upturned craft and its owner was able to re-board his vessel and began to bail out his craft.

Unfortunately water continued to ingress into the vessel so it was taken alongside the lifeboat and towed towards the south shore of the Swale before the water onboard had dropped sufficiently for the vessel to be taken under tow for Faversham Creek and moored at Hollowshore, where the Sheppey Coastguard were waiting to assist.

The lifeboat then returned to assist the Rowena which had remained at anchor at the scene and she was also taken under tow for Faversham Creek and beached at Hollowshore assisted by Sheppey Coastguard for her skipper to inspect his craft.

Whitstable Lifeboat then returned to station at 13.45 after the call which had lasted over two hours.

The owner of the ‘Lugger’ came from Faversham whilst the Rowena’s owner was from Sittingbourne.

This was the 19th call of the year for Whitstable’s volunteer lifeboat crews.