Scarborough RNLI launch after fishing boat's propeller caught in net

Scarborough RNLI’s all-weather Shannon lifeboat launched in the early hours this morning when a net snared a fishing boat’s propeller.

Tuesday, 31st March 2020, 12:58 pm
Updated Tuesday, 31st March 2020, 1:03 pm
The Shannon all-weather lifeboat arriving back in Scarborough. Picture: RNLI

However, the 34m Alcedo BA77 scalloper was 4.8m deep so couldn’t be towed into the harbour at either Scarborough or Whitby.

The stricken vessel, built in Whitby and registered in Ballantrae, Scotland, was about 15 miles east of Scarborough, on a choppy sea.

The coastguard eventually decided that the best course of action was to call a commercial recovery vessel to tow it to Teesside.

Crews launched at 3.50am in rainy conditions and returned not long after sunrise, by which time the clouds had cleared to bright sunshine.

The lifeboat’s standard crew of six included the key roles of coxswain, navigator and mechanic, working to a rota.

In accordance with the current guidelines on social distancing, the other volunteers who responded to their pager-alerts remained in their vehicles until chosen as crew and the rest were sent home.

The crew's navigator was Wave Crookes, and the mechanic was Kev Roberts, on his first shout since he qualified in the role.

Kev said: “It was nice and smooth, with no trouble. Everything went as expected.”

All the training over the last year stood Kev in good stead, including three visits to the RNLI training centre in Poole and countless hours at the lifeboat station and at sea.

All RNLI trainees have to balance their COBT (Competency Based Training) units with practical experience. “You can read everything you need to know in books but at the end of the day you need to be able to apply it practically as well”, he said.

Kev’s work wasn’t finished when the lifeboat got back to to the lifeboathouse.

Because of the Covid-19 virus, everything inside the boat has to be thoroughly disinfected after a shout.

He explained: “We clean with normal cleaner then we wipe everything down from top to bottom with disinfectant.”

The other boat crew were coxswain Lee Marton, Keith Eade, Mark Jenkinson and John Huntley.

They were complemented by five shore crew: Tabz Nixon, John Kitto, Paul Huggins, Simon Loveland, John Wallis and Frank Wright.

Andy Volans, lifeboat operations manager, said: “Despite the current situation, the station is ready to respond to calls for help when required”.

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