Hunt for skipper after yacht runs ashore at Seaton

The yacht Louise being towed into Lyme Regis Harbour by the RNLI lifeboat. Photo by Richard Horobin

The yacht Louise being towed into Lyme Regis Harbour by the RNLI lifeboat. Photo by Richard Horobin - Credit: Archant

Lifeboats from Lyme and Sidmouth join coastguard teams in major search for ‘missing’ crew

A police officer aboard the yacht Louise. Photo by Richard Horobin

A police officer aboard the yacht Louise. Photo by Richard Horobin - Credit: Archant

Lifeboats from Lyme Regis and Sidmouth were launched on Friday to join a widespread search after a yacht was found beached with no-one on board.

The 20 foot yacht, Louise, ram aground at Haven Cliff, east of Axmouth.

Coastguards ashore, the coastguard helicopter and the Lyme Regis lifeboat carried out extensive searches after clothing was found on the beach near the yacht. An inflated lifejacket was also found nearby.

The lifeboat carried out a sweep of the coastline but found nothing.


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Solent coastguards had requested launching the lifeboat at 10.50am.

Two lifeboat crew members, John Cable and Tom Crabbe , swam ashore to assist coastguards checking the yacht.

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After searching the coastline from Charton Bay to Exmouth the lifeboat towed the yacht five miles to the safety of Lyme Regis Harbour where a police officer was waiting.

The lifeboat was stood down by Solent coastguards and the search suspended at 4.30pm.

The lifeboat was on the slipway ready to enter the boathouse when coastguards requested another launching after a police helicopter reported what was believed to be an orange liferaft at Culverhole Point. The lifeboat crew discovered that the object was a lobster pot marker and the search was again called off.

* Coastguards have issued an urgent appeal to the new owner of the yacht to get in touch.

Steven Mann, Coastguard in charge of coordinating the search, said: “Given the uncertainty of the situation, we are very keen to hear from the owner of this yacht if he is safe and well. In the meantime we will continue to carry out a detailed search of the area where the vessel is likely to have drifted.”

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