Sidmouth Lifeboat rescues speedboat skipper

Warning by Sidmouth Lifeboat to speedboat users after

POWERBOAT users have been warned not to go to sea without checking they have an anchor, spare fuel and a method of communication.

Mark Roden, Sidmouth Lifeboat’s public relations officer, gave the warning this week after Sidmouth Lifeboat rescued a man from rocks near the River Otter on Monday evening.

Portland Coastguard tasked the lifeboat just after 5pm after a white speedboat was reported to have run out of fuel near the river mouth at Budleigh Salterton.

Mark said: “The conditions were treacherous, due to the surf conditions and the surrounding rocks; it was not possible for the lifeboat to approach the casualty vessel.”

Instead, crew member Dan Green swam ashore with a swimming line paid out from the lifeboat and plucked the speedboat owner from the treacherous surf and rocks.

Dan, pictured, said: “I suspect he had been there about 30 minutes. He was wet and a little bit cold, but not dangerously so. His pride was mangled and so was his boat, which was stuck by the stern.”

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Once the skipper was on board the lifeboat he was wrapped in a blanket before being safely landed at Budleigh Salterton at around 6pm to be reunited with his family. Mark said the lifeboat returned to the scene and made several attempts to recover the speedboat between 6pm and 8pm, with high tide approaching.

“The vessel however was heavily fouled on the rocks and filled with water. The speedboat was stuck fast, sunk and could not be recovered despite the rising tide. The skipper was advised.”