Cowes Lifeboat Station

Grounded Yacht Leads to Long Wait for Cowes Lifeboat

18th September 2018

Cowes lifeboat tows the yacht before handing over the cross-Solent job to Yarmouth lifeboat.

An ocean racer that had grounded on a sandbank at the entrance to
Southampton Water, in strong winds and choppy seas, this afternoon led to
Cowes lifeboat playing an uncomfortable waiting game for some two hours,
eventually joined by Yarmouth lifeboat.

The 40 foot Olympias Tigress had apparently drifted hard on to Bramble Bank after
lack of fuel meant the two-person crew could not get out of trouble by using the

Although the RNLI’s Atlantic 85 rib Sheena Louise lost little time in crossing the
Solent, after launching at 1.50 pm, it soon became apparent that the crew would
have to wait a long time for the tide to rise sufficiently for the yacht to float free.
During the long wait it was decided that it would be prudent for Yarmouth’s all-
weather more powerful lifeboat to provide on-the-scene backup.

Finally, at 3.59, a crew member of Olympias Tigress radioed they had regained full

The long-awaited tow could then be carried out. Initially the yacht was towed off the
bank by Cowes lifeboat, then the task was taken over by the Yarmouth lifeboat which
delivered the yacht to Cowes Yacht Haven where its hull could be inspected for
possible damage.