NSRI Port Elizabeth volunteer sea rescue duty crew are responding to catch a 36 foot yacht being blown further out to sea, with 4 men onboard, after the yachts steering is reported to have sustained mechanical failure.
The yacht, sailing from Richard’s Bay to Port Elizabeth, alerted NSRI this morning to say that their steering has failed and in strong winds they are being blown off-shore and are currently 2 nautical miles South of Bird Island, about 38 nautical miles from Port Elizabeth.
NSRI volunteers are responding to the NSRI Port Elizabeth sea rescue base to launch the deep-sea rescue craft Spirit of Toft.
The men are reported as not injured but requiring urgent assistance.
UPDATE: The Port Elizabeth yacht Hail Forth, with 4 males from Port Elizabeth onboard, sailing from Richards Bay to her home Port of Port Elizabeth, was met by NSRI Port Elizabeth sea rescue craft Spirit of Toft at 10h00 this morning, approximately 40 nautical miles off-shore, and a tow-line was rigged.
Ian Gray, NSRI Port Elizabeth station commander, said; “All 4 men were found safe and not injured after their yacht’s steering damaged causing them to be swept further out to sea despite efforts to slow their drift and they called for assistance.
“The towing effort by NSRI Port Elizabeth has been slow, between 5 knots and 6.5 knots, towing against a (up to) 30 knot South Westerly wind and a drogue was deployed behind the yacht to help stabilize the yacht for the tow and this further slowed progress.
“The towing effort is currently making headway of 6.5 knots and we expect them safely in Port at 16h30 today.”
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