Ramsgate RNLI launch both boats to sinking motor yacht off Broadstairs

Ramsgate RNLI called out the the vessel in trouble Photo by Steve Burton

Yesterday (December 4) the Ramsgate Lifeboat volunteer crew launched both boats to the assistance of a small motor yacht.

At 2.45pm the call came through from HM Coastguard for the All Weather boat to launch to a Pan-Pan (emergency call) from a motor yacht travelling from Chatham to Ramsgate.

At the time of launch the boat had suffered engine failure whilst crossing Louisa Bay in Broadstairs. The reason for the Pan-Pan rather than a Mayday was that there was no danger to life at the time.

The boat launched in good visibility and with a moderate sea state, however on arrival at the scene it was found that the motor yacht had been swept closer to shore with the incoming waves breaking over its bow and it was in danger of sinking.

Photo by Steve Burton

The inshore lifeboat was launched as that was able to get into shallower water, and under difficult circumstances managed to safely take both casualties off the motorboat and transfer them to the all weather, where they were taken into the wheelhouse to warm up.

Unable to do anything for the motor yacht which was rapidly sinking, and could not be towed, both boats returned to station.

Coxswain Ian Cannon said: “Although this took place in shallow water and close to the shore, it was a very difficult situation that the two casualties found themselves in. We are glad that we were able to get to them in time.”

Photo HM Coastguard Margate

Today HM Coastguard Margate were re tasked as parts of the vessel that had broken off had washed up on the shore. Officers searched the beach area from Louisa Gap to Ramsgate main sands and found several pieces washed up. This was reported to the council and staff will attend to remove the debris.


  1. its nice to see the lifeboat being used for purpose , the ones at dover are running a taxi service FACT .

  2. For those that are critical of the ‘RNLI taxi service’ please watch a recent movie called ‘The Swimmer’ which might give you another perspective.

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