A yacht was destroyed by fire after catching alight in County Down, Northern Ireland early yesterday morning. The fierce fire engulfed a 40ft two-masted glass fibre yacht near Rostrevor Pier.
The owner had been contacted and confirmed there were two gas cylinders aboard the yacht but no people.
The Kilkeel lifeboat Frank William Walton was launched at 2.20am and quickly reached the stricken yacht which very quickly was ablaze from bow to stern.
One of the propane gas cylinders had already exploded so the lifeboat with, four fire-fighters from Warrenpoint and a mobile fire fighting pump aboard, stood off at a safe distance.
When the fire had somewhat subsided the lifeboat returned to the yacht and the flames were extinguished.
The lifeboat left the firefighters and the pump ashore at Warrenpoint and returned safely to the boathouse in Kilkeel at 6.45am.
Helm Gerry Smyth said: ‘It was vital that the lifeboat crew, the firefighters and the lifeboat were kept out of danger whilst there was the possibility of the gas cylinders exploding.
‘The yacht was extensively damaged and still afloat when we left the scene but importantly no lives were lost.’
The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) has cleared London Duck Tours to resume trips along the Thames, following last year’s mid-cruise fire.
Two vessels have been approved for use, following a Marine Accident Investigation Branch report, which pinpointed the cause of the blaze. It is believed that the boats’ buoyancy foam was to blame for the accidents, which resulted in 30 people being rescued and some passengers jumping into the Thames to avoid the flames.
An MCA spokesperson told the BBC: “The operator has been working to demonstrate that two of its vessels have been improved sufficiently to meet our safety requirements.
“We believe that we should shortly be in a position to issue a short-term certificate to allow them to operate for a period of three months.”
The company said in a statement on its website that it would be announcing the date of its return to the river “shortly”, with a normal service set to resume “as soon as possible”.
Motor Boats Monthly has been to the south of France to test out the new Jeanneau Leader 40 open sportscruiser, which first saw on dry land at the 2013 Paris Boat Show.
Nick also looks at the convertible aft sunbed in the cockpit, as well as the myriad seating options on the Leader 40.
Taking to the water, Nick also comments on visibility, the helm position and how the hull copes with the choppy conditions that we encountered.
Below deck, we take a closer look at the conventional layout, including the dinette, well-stocked galley, both cabins, and the heads.
Nick’s full boat test review is published in the July edition of Motor Boats Monthly, which is out now.
Dalian Wanda’s acquisition makes Sunseeker well placed to ride expected wave of boat buying in China. Sunseeker is now officially a Chinese-owned firm after Dalian Wanda today completed its £320 million acquisition of the Poole-based boatbuilder.
News of the takeover first broke in early June, with a confirmation coming on 19 June that the Chinese company, with interests in commercial property and tourism, was looking to buy the UK’s biggest boatbuilder.
Dalian Wanda is headed by Wang Jianlin, the owner a Sunseeker Predator 108 and reportedly China’s richest person. In a statement issued today, he said: “We are excited to embark on the next chapter in the development of Sunseeker’s business and look forward to building upon the company’s reputation of excellence. “Wanda is well positioned to help Sunseeker capitalise on the trend we see for China and other growth markets to contribute significantly to global expansion in the luxury yacht sector over the next few years.”
Dalian Wanda has taken a 91.81% stake in the company, with Sunseeker management holding the remaining 8.19%. Following news of the takeover in June, Suneeeker moved quickly to ease concerns that the company would be shipped offshore.
This was later underlined by the Chinese company, which said Sunseeker would remain headquartered in Poole and maintain its British production bases and workforce.
If predictions about boat ownership in China hold true – with one official estimate suggesting the number of boats could jump from 3,000 currently to 100,000 by 2020 – this deal places Sunseeker at the crest of a massive boatbuying wave in China.
A 36 ft long humpback whale was found dead in the Thames Estuary early yesterday morning.
After the mammal was found by a passing tugboat near the Isle of Sheppey in Kent the coastguard issued a navigation warning to any vessels in the nearby area, alerting them of the huge floating carcass.
The whale has now been towed away and a post-mortem will be conducted by the Natural History Museum.
This unusual incident illustrates that there are all sorts of hazards out there for sailors, even in the Thames Estuary.
Trinity House, the General Lighthouse Authority, has released a notice to mariners who are active in the Thames Estuary. The notice is regarding the repositioning of some lighted buoys. If you travel through this area please be aware of the amended locations.
An engine room fire on a boat travelling from Canvey Island to London caused three men to be rescued by the lifeboat services.
The Lifeboat services were sent from Gravesend Royal National Lifeboat Association to perform the rescue operation. The fire service was alerted and used thermal imaging and ventilation to check for the spread of fumes.
Whilst fire is unlikely on a boat that is well maintained to minimum safety standards, it is a grave concern to boaters who can be caught unawares or in a situation where escape is difficult. Therefore it is important to make sure you have as many fire security measures in place as possible.
Despite the fact that Chipping Norton Yacht Club is almost 100 miles from the coast, it is proving a success.
Trevor Taylor launched the land-locked yacht club in order to give sailing enthusiasts somewhere to socialise without the need to travel all the way to the sea. Trevor was only expecting between 20 and 30 members, however since it was set up last month it has already gained more than 100 members.
Visit Chipping Norton Yacht Club website here:
The RNLI had to rescue nearly 8,000 people from various situations in 2012. Whether it is because of the weather or freak circumstances that lead to a situation that you are unable to cope with, it is important that you have the correct safety equipment on-board. It is also vital that you check that your insurance covers you for the location that you are sailing and any activities you are planning. For example;
- On-board parties
- Water sports
- Fishing trips
- Off-shore sailing
- Diving and snorkelling
See RNLI website www.rnli.org
“Useless unless worn.”
That’s the overriding message that these two Yorkshire based fishermen are trying to convey in this two minute video. It was produced following a report that found 26 fishermen could have been saved if they had been wearing a lifejacket. The video was the idea of The Fishing Industry Safety Group.