Swanage RNLI night time rescue of head injury casualty

In the early hours, the Swanage lifeboat was launched after a member of a crew on a yacht suffered a head injury and the vessel, having run out of fuel and with no wind to sail, was stranded out to sea.

The all weather lifeboat made its way through a flat sea to reach the yacht, arriving about 30 minutes later in the dark of the night, very early on Monday 11th March 2024.

Swanage lifeboat crew 2024

The Swanage Lifeboat crew volunteer to save lives day or night

Injured man handed over to paramedics

Two members of the lifeboat crew transferred onto the yacht and assessed the man’s injuries. They decided to get him to hospital as quickly as possible, so moved the injured crew mate onto the lifeboat.

Before heading back to Swanage, spare fuel was passed across to the yacht and two RNLI volunteer crew members stayed with the vessel to try and get the engine working.

The lifeboat got back to Swanage Pier at 2.35 am and handed over the injured man to the coastguard and paramedics.

The lifeboat took the opportunity to pick up an extra crew member before heading back out to sea for a further rendezvous with the yacht.

Swanage RNLI rescue drifting yacht and tow it into Poole Harbour
Library Image / Swanage RNLI

The yacht was towed back to Poole Harbour

Detour to Poole Quay

Swanage Lifeboat Station reported:

“The lifeboat crew on board the casualty yacht had re-started the engine, however, a strong tide was running and the yacht was barely able to make any headway, so, as the lifeboat closed the yacht’s position for the second time, it was decided that towing it back to Swanage was the most prudent course of action.

“The tow was established and steady progress was being made back towards Swanage Bay when the lifeboat was informed that paramedics had taken the casualty to Poole for monitoring.”

Sunrise in Swanage

Returning at dawn to Swanage, the crew didn’t have a chance to get much sleep

Returned to Swanage at dawn

There was then a change of plan and the lifeboat changed course and headed to Poole Quay with the yacht in tow, so the yacht’s crew members could be closer to their injured crew mate.

At about 5.45 am the yacht reached Poole Quay Boat Haven with the help of Poole volunteer coastguards.

Swanage Lifeboat Station added:

“The two lifeboat crew were reunited with the lifeboat and the short passage back to Swanage was made as the dawn skies brightened.

“The lifeboat was re-fuelled and ready for further service shortly after 6.30 am and the volunteers returned home to grab whatever sleep they could before the start of the week.”

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