Gafirs called out to boat with suspected fire

A YACHT with a suspected fire and another with engine failure kept volunteers at a lifeboat station busy over the bank holiday weekend.

Tuesday, 8th May 2018, 12:56 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th June 2018, 5:40 pm
Gafirs tow a yacht with a suspected fire on Sunday. Picture: Gafirs.

Gosport and Fareham Inshore Rescue Service (Gafirs), based at Stokes Bay, was first launched on Sunday at 6am to a 32ft yacht which was emitting large amounts of smoke in its cabin.

The vessel, which had four people on board, had left Gosport Marina and reached Outer Spit Buoy when the engine started smoking and the crew suspected a fire.

Gafirs evacuated the crew and sent two of its volunteers onboard to investigate.

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Coxswain Steve Ray said: ‘It was believed the smoke was caused by oil on hot engine parts.

‘After liaising with the Queen’s Harbour Master it was decided we would tow the vessel into Portsmouth Harbour.’

The yacht was placed alongside Camber Dock where Portsmouth Coastguard Rescue Team and Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service investigated the source of the fire.

Steve added: ‘The fire service deemed the vessel safe and that no fire had occurred – blaming the smoke in the cabin on the oil we had suspected.’

Gafirs were called out again on Monday, at around 4pm, to a 23ft boat with engine failure.

It was anchored off Gilkicker when the lifeboat arrive.

The vessel was placed under tow and taken safely back to its berth at Hornet Sailing Club, near Haslar, Gosport.