A 28 foot with a potentially serious problem with its rudder was towed through a choppy Solent into Cowes this afternoon by the local RNLI lifeboat.
The yacht, the Spoondrift, with four men aboard, had reported that a stern bracket attached to the rudder was coming loose, and the skipper was uncertain whether it would be safe to continue on the voyage from Poole to Chatham in the brisk south-westerly.
Cowes lifeboat, with Gary Payne at the helm, was soon alongside the yacht, in Gurnard Bay, and took it in tow to Shepards Wharf Marina, Cowes.
Lifeboat Operations Manager Mark Southwell said: “The skipper made a sensible seamanlike decision, and decided it would be better to come into the harbour for repairs. Some people might have carried on regardless, and then got into all sorts of horrible problems.”
One of Spoondrift’s crew members had another reason to be relieved about the diversion into Cowes. He had suffered badly from seasickness, and was able to leave his companions and make his way back to his home in Faversham by public transport.
The lifeboat had been alerted to Spoondrift’s plea for help just after 2 pm.