The Poole Lifeboat Station had one of its busiest afternoon and evenings for a long time on July 16 with the two lifeboats being called out to assist with six incidents.
It started when the inshore lifeboat was on a training exercise and at 1430, she was asked to assist the Swanage lifeboat by taking over a tow and bringing a 40ft motor cruiser, with an engine problem, back into Poole Harbour.
The lifeboats rendezvoused just outside the harbour entrance and the tow was exchanged. As they returned into the harbour, Solent Coastguard tasked the lifeboat to assist a person in a small rib that was stuck in the mud at the entrance of the Wareham Channel. The lifeboat dropped off the vessel they were towing.
The lifeboat found the rib, which was heading into harbour, was high and dry. Two of the lifeboat crew crawled across the mud and a tow line was attached and the rib was refloated and made her own way back to Ridge Wharf.
As she was returning, the inshore lifeboat was tasked by the Coastguard to take another tow off the Swanage lifeboat and they towed a 22ft speedboat, without power, back to the lifeboat station.
Just after 1830, a Mayday call came through from a 31ft yacht with two people on board that reported smoke coming from her engine room and the next call came through that flames could be seen and they were abandoning the yacht. The vessel was in the Swash Channel which is the main Channel outside the entrance of Poole Harbour on the way to Old Harry Rocks.
At 1840, both Poole lifeboats launched The inshore lifeboat was on the scene within eight minutes and they found that the two people had been picked up by a passing motorboat and were safe and well. The ferry Condor Vitesse had been coming into port and also launched her rescue boat.
There were a lot of vessels in the vicinity so the lifeboat crew moved the vessels away, securing the area around the burning boat. They transferred the casualties from the motorboat on to the lifeboat and then assessed the situation, establishing how much fuel was onboard and if there were any gas bottles or anything else inflammable.
The all-weather lifeboat began to douse the fire down as the vessel drifted north east.
The inshore lifeboat stood by as a guard vessel, and the casualties were transferred onto to the pilot boat Vanguard which took them back to Poole Yacht Club. The fire was soon under control and after it had been put out, they collected the mast and the rigging, securing it all to the side of the boat then towed the yacht to Poole Yacht Club where the fire brigade checked the vessel over.