At 5.30pm on Tuesday 16 July, Calshot RNLI Lifeboat volunteers were paged by the Coastguard to a Mayday call from a sailing yacht that was taking on water with four persons and a baby on board.
Calshot RNLI crew quickly launched the Atlantic 85 Lifeboat ‘Max Walls’ to the stricken vessel that had reportedly already taken on 18 inches of water.
The 32ft motor yacht had been making its way from Port Solent to Hamble when its propeller had become fouled up on some underwater cables, just off Hill Head.
Underwater works had been taking place in the area, and temporary buoys were marking the hazard.
The collision caused the prop of the vessel to detach from the boat, and it quickly started to take on water.
When Calshot RNLI volunteers arrived on the scene, a workboat from William Shipping and Sea Start were already at the location and had begun to pump out the water with a bilge pump.
As a priority, Calshot’s crew assisted the four casualties and baby onto the lifeboat and returned to Calshot Lifeboat Station.
Shore crew then helped the casualties into the lifeboat station where they could be kept warm.
According to the RNLI, the casualties were experienced sailors, and all on board were wearing life jackets.
The Atlantic 85 Lifeboat then returned to the casualty vessel which was still caught in the underwater cables.
The team who were carrying out the underwater works were called and attended the scene with divers who were able to free the boat.
Once clear, Calshot RNLI Lifeboat was able to assist Sea Start in towing the yacht to Hamble Point Marina where the boat could be lifted from the water.
Meanwhile, the casualties were taken by road to meet with their boat.
Calshot RNLI’s volunteer crew returned to station at 9.10pm, where the boat was washed down, refuelled and made ready for service.