Author: Aaron Gent, Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer
The crew of the RNLI Portsmouth Lifeboat were called away from their festive preparations on the afternoon of Christmas Eve and requested to launch to assist a broken down speedboat reported to be drifting out of Langstone harbour.
The family on board had just launched their newly purchased powerboat from the Langstone public slipway but had been unable to start its engine.
Caught by the tide, the vessel and the five people on board started to quickly drift out of the harbour and into the Solent.
Seeing the vessel having difficulties, 14-year-old Joshua Vince phoned 999 from the beach to inform the Coastguard. Solent Coastguard then requested the use of the RNLI Atlantic class lifeboat.
The lifeboat launched and quickly arrived on scene, now one mile south of the harbour entrance. The crew ensured that the four adults and one child were safe and well before passing a rope and towing the vessel back to the public slipway.
The RNLI lifeboat returned to station shortly before 3pm.