Trawler pulled from sandbank by Lowestoft Lifeboat

RESCUE: The 36-metre beam trawler, Gert Jan, which ran aground on the edge of the Newcome Sands. Pic

RESCUE: The 36-metre beam trawler, Gert Jan, which ran aground on the edge of the Newcome Sands. Pictures: MICK HOWES. - Credit: Archant

A trawler ran aground off Lowestoft harbour entrance this morning (Friday, July 26) and was rescued by the Lowestoft RNLI lifeboat.

RESCUE: The 36-metre beam trawler, Gert Jan, which ran aground on the edge of the Newcome Sands. Pic

RESCUE: The 36-metre beam trawler, Gert Jan, which ran aground on the edge of the Newcome Sands. Pictures: MICK HOWES. - Credit: Archant

The 36-metre beam trawler, Gert Jan, ran aground on the edge of the Newcombe Sands just half a mile from the pier heads at Lowestoft – with the volunteer crew of the town's all-weather Spirit of Lowestoft Lifeboat called out at 8.06am to help the stranded vessel.

Lifeboat coxswain John Fox said: 'We could see the stranded trawler as soon as we left our moorings and we reached her in minutes. The vessel was very unlucky to have caught the edge of the sandbank.

'The flood tide conditions at the time were tending to push the trawler on to the sand. We attached a towline and after pulling the bow around into the tide and with the help of the trawler's own engines, we managed to free the vessel.

'We understand that the trawler had been trying for some time to free herself before we were called but once we arrived the whole rescue operation took about ten minutes,' Mr Fox added.


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The 312-tonne Lowestoft registered trawler was built in 1987 and was formerly named the St Thomas. She was on passage to Lowestoft from Den Helder in The Netherlands and had almost reached her destination when she got into trouble.

• Visitors will have the chance to meet some of the volunteer crew and look around the Spirit of Lowestoft Lifeboat on Sunday (July 28) when Lowestoft RNLI lifeboat station on the town's South Pier holds its annual open day. Subject to operational requirements at 2pm the lifeboat will also take part in a mock rescue just off the South Beach.

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