Author: Susannah Calderan, Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer
Tobermory RNLI Lifeboat had a busy day on Thursday 27 August, launching three times to the assistance of vessels in distress.
The first shout of the day was at 12.20pm, where the Lifeboat responded rapidly to VHF traffic indicating a red flare had been seen at Glenborrodale in Loch Sunart. On arrival at the scene, the Tobermory crew found that a small dinghy with six persons onboard – two adults and their four teenage children – had filled with water and capsized. All of them were wearing lifejackets and had put up the red flare before the capsize. They had all been in the water for a short while before a vessel from a nearby fish farm went to their aid, recovered the family from the water and took them ashore.
Although weather conditions for the first shout were fair, by the time of the second – 9.50pm – a westerly wind of Beaufort 7-8 was blowing and the weather was very poor.
Tobermory RNLI Lifeboat rescued a yacht which had dragged its anchor and run aground at the north end of Oronsay in Loch Sunart. A husband and wife were onboard, and the vessel was towed to safety on the pontoons in Tobermory harbour.
With the yacht scarcely alongside, the Lifeboat received a third call-out to another yacht which had dragged and was aground at the head of Loch Aline. The Lifeboat’s daughter craft was launched, and the vessel was taken onto a mooring in the loch. Conditions were still very poor, with driving wind and rain and low visibility.
Tobermory RNLI Lifeboat Coxswain Phil Higson says: ‘The weather was just terrible yesterday evening, and some people got caught out. A busy day, and all’s well that ends well!’