31ft cruiser rescued by lifeboat crews off Norfolk coast

RNLI Happisburgh rescue - Howard Bell towing the cruiser towards Great Yarmouth. Picture: RNLI

RNLI Happisburgh rescue - Howard Bell towing the cruiser towards Great Yarmouth. Picture: RNLI - Credit: Archant

A lifeboat crew was called into action to help a 31ft cruiser that had broken down off the coast, near Happisburgh Lighthouse.

RNLI Happisburgh rescue - Howard Bell towing the cruiser towards Great Yarmouth. Picture: RNLI

RNLI Happisburgh rescue - Howard Bell towing the cruiser towards Great Yarmouth. Picture: RNLI - Credit: Archant

Happisburgh lifeboat's head launcher Paul Broomfield was alerted by the UK Coastguard and in turn alerted the crew for a launch of the station's Atlantic Howard Bell, at 7.20pm on Sunday, June 9, with Jake Munday on the helm and Martin Gibbs, Sean Thurston and Chris Rigsby as crew.

Howard Bell was soon alongside a 31ft cruiser which had lost power with four people on board.

An RNLI spokesman said: "Martin Gibbs and Sean Thurston were put on board the cruiser to try to get the cruiser under way.

"They managed to get the engines started again but after five minutes they stopped. The crew were unable to get them restarted. They then rigged for towing the cruiser to Great Yarmouth.


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"Once under way the lifeboat was only making a speed of six knots which would have taken them until after 11pm to arrive at Great Yarmouth.

"The crew informed UK Coastguards and Caister Lifeboat was launched to meet them and then take over the tow to Yarmouth. The transfer of tow took place off Horsey at 9.30pm.

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"Once the tow was safely handed over to Caister Lifeboat, the Howard Bell returned to station and was rehoused and made ready for service by 10pm.

"This was the first call-out for Mr Rigsby."

Mr Munday said: "This was a good job and the crew all worked well together and it is always good to work with other lifeboats."

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