On the afternoon of Friday 24 May, Porthcawl RNLI Lifeboat, Rose of the Shires, was launched to assist a yacht 1 mile south off Sker Point, which was taking on water, and struggling to make way.

Porthcawl’s Atlantic 85 Lifeboat launched last Friday to a yacht that was on passage to Swansea, when it was swamped, and started taking on water off the notorious Sker Point, Porthcawl.

Volunteer RNLI Helmsman Steven Knipe, assisted by crew members Alex Denny, Daniel Jones and Jordan Feely, made their way quickly to the yacht, and when they came along side, found that the yacht was leaning over at a very steep angle, which made coming along side, and putting a crew member on board very difficult.

Alex Denny, an off duty Police Community Support Officer, was the crew member who volunteered to go aboard the yacht said “thanks to Steve’s boat handling skills, he came right alongside the yacht in very rough seas, close enough for me to climb on board. Once I was on board the yacht, I made sure that the crew was safe, and started to get the boat ready for a tow. Steve then again came in close to the yacht, and threw me a tow line. As I was hanging off the front of the yacht, I was being pounded by waves, which made it difficult to get the tow line attached. Once it was made fast and secure, the lifeboat towed the yacht to safer deep water to await the arrival of the Mumbles RNLI Off Shore Lifeboat that took the yacht to Swansea.”

Steve Jones, the Deputy Launching Authority from Porthcawl RNLI said “although they are volunteers, they train hard twice a week, every week, for this sort of call, it was a skilful rescue performed in difficult conditions by a highly experienced crew.”