St Mary’s Lifeboat Called Out To Help Rescue Five Fishermen

Trawler men rescued off Scilly Isles on board Dingle's Cú NaMara heading to Castletownbere. (Photo from the Irish Coast Guard).

Trawler men rescued off Scilly Isles on board Dingle’s Cú NaMara heading to Castletownbere.
(Photo from the Irish Coast Guard).

The St Mary’s lifeboat joined an international effort to save five men in a life raft, 75 miles off Scilly in the early hours of yesterday morning.

The 18m Banff-registered Kairos fishing boat issued distress calls in rough seas and force 7 winds.

RNLB ‘The Whiteheads’ headed out at a speed of between 11-14 knots. It was estimated that it would have taken six hours to reach the scene.

Two Irish Coastguard search and rescue helicopters, fishing vessels and two commercial ships were also part of the rescue effort.

Scilly’s lifeboat, under the command of Stuart Hitchens, turned back when crew were informed that the men were safe. It had travelled 31 nautical miles from the Steeple buoy when they received the good news.

The fishermen were taken onboard the Irish vessel Cu Na Mara. The majority of the rescued crew are said to be nationals of the Philippines.

They arrived at Castletownbere in Ireland at around 3pm this afternoon.

One of the distress calls was from an EPRIB locator beacon, which gave a GPS location for the Kairos.

Jim Morrison, Senior Maritime Operations Officer for the UK Coastguard, says it shows the value of having this technology onboard.

The level of international interest in the rescue meant that the Isles Of Scilly was ‘trending’ as one of the most popular terms on social media site Twitter this lunchtime.