Gafirs called to search for missing person and boat stuck in mud

A LIFEBOAT rescue service was called out to a missing person and a vessel stuck in mud at Portsmouth Harbour.

Tuesday, 14th March 2017, 11:19 am
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 10:56 am
Gafirs searching Haslar Lake last night after reports of a missing person. Picture: Gafirs.

Gosport and Fareham Inshore Rescue Service (Gafirs) was in action twice last night.

The volunteer crews were paged by the coastguard at around 10.30pm to assist with a search for a missing person.

After an extensive search the crews were stood down but while returning to station were retasked to a vessel aground in the northern area of Portsmouth Harbour.

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The 19ft sailing boat had run aground in Spider Lake earlier in the day and had attempted to refloat at high tide – however the attempts were unsuccessful.

The yacht, which had two people onboard, was stuck fast in the mud and even with the tide at its highest could not be refloated.

Gafirs had to use its inshore lifeboat to reach the vessel as it could cope with the shallow water more safely than the larger lifeboat.

Coxswain Brian Pack said: ‘The crew of the inshore lifeboat managed to get close enough to help the crew off the stricken vessel which they anchored safely to return to when the tide was at its highest.

‘Although they were a little cold after waiting out for the tide for around eight hours, they were both safe and well and we returned them to shore at Port Solent where they soon warmed up.’

In total the incidents lasted five hours and were GAFIRS 10th and 11th of the year.