16.00. ‘Volunteer’ took up station ahead and in very rough conditions towed the sloop seaward into deep-water clear of the shallows. As progress was painfully slow at 2 kts, and with the danger of the tow parting, increasing winds, and failing light it was decided to request the assistance of an ‘all weather lifeboat. ‘Volunteer’ managed to hold the casualty for a further fifty minutes until the arrival of the Aldeburgh lifeboat (hooray). The lifeboat had the same difficulties passing the tow to the now very tired and wet yachtsman, so an attempt was made to put one of ‘Volunteers’ crewmen aboard the sloop to assist. In the ‘foray’ and attempt to leap aboard, the crewman was lost overboard and spent an interesting six minutes in the water before he was recovered safely by ‘Volunteer’. Which then kept station astern of the casualty in case of any further mishap. With the coming of darkness, the ‘Pormpette’ was safely towed into Harwich by the Aldeburgh Lifeboat, with ‘Volunteer’ arriving back home at 19.15. 

15.53 Casualty located 4 miles N of NE Bawdsey By, in danger of grounding on the Aldeburgh Ridge. Attempt made to pass tow to casualty in difficult conditions with lone yachtsman on foredeck unable to move and fatigued. Three attempts were made before the yachtsman now lying prone, managed to make the tow fast. 

15.26 ‘Volunteer’ on-scene at NE Whiting and nothing seen — mod visibility, requested casualty position update from DCG, still NE Whiting. Search commenced in heavy seas towards NE Bawdsey By, nothing seen with no other craft visible. DCG sitrep — now advised casualty giving position as just N of Orford Ness lighthouse. 

Sunday 10/09/17 SW Gale 8— Severe 9 expected later, rough to very rough. 14.40. ‘Volunteer’ refueling at SYH tasked by Dover CO to the 38ft sloop ‘Pompette’ bound Harwich, 2 POB requesting assistance in rough seas off the NE Whiting. 

14.20 Tasked by Dover CO to assist the 36ft sloop ‘Morning All’, 2 POB reporting engine failure in the River Orwell. Sloop under sail but requiring assistance. 14.34. ‘Volunteer’ escorting ‘Morning All’ and assisted with mooring. DCG sitrep. 

Sunday 03/0917 ‘Volunteer’ on routine patrol of River Orwell observed unattended white dinghy on mud at Pond Ooze. Closed to investigate and confirmed dinghy belonged to bait diggers some way off. 

16.44 Tow made fast and sloop towed off into deep water where advised to check bilges and stern gear. Dover CG sitrep. 

16.43 Harwich harbour observed 28ft sloop ‘Lady Caroline’, 2 POB aground on ‘Shelf’ with a falling tide. 

14.20 ‘Caroline’ under tow bound Titchmarsh Marina where safely berthed 15.35. 

13.50. Stood down. 

13.43. ‘Volunteer’ on-scene only to find 3 inflatable Club Rescue Boats safely at

anchor, DCG sitrep - 1st informant confirms these as target. 

13.42 Shotley Spit. ‘Volunteer’ tasked by Dover CG to the 23ft angling boat, ‘Caroline’ with 2 POB reporting and engine seizure and smoke, 1 mile south of Pye End. 13.56. On-scene, DCG sitrep confirming no fire onboard casualty.

Saturday 02/09/17 13.34. ‘Volunteer’ in River Deben tasked by Dover CG to a 3-9’s call reporting 3 inflatable dinghies drifting out to sea off Dovercourt Bay.


Sunday 27/08/17 16.55 SYH recovering ‘Volunteer’ from water when called by 28ft sloop ‘Dawn Treader’, 4 POB reporting engine problems 1 mile east of Felixstowe Pier, yachts crew not confident enough to sail through busy harbour.


17.25. sloop under tow and safely berthed on visitors pontoon at SYH by 19.00. Dover CO sitrep and stood down 

Dover CG sitrep and ‘Volunteer’ tasked to assist. 

16.15 .Ramsey Buoy— River Stour. ‘volunteer ‘tasked by Dover CG to assist a broken down powerboat, 4 POB at Woodbridge. 

Saturday 26/08/17 16.20. River Orwell. ‘Volunteer’ called to assist the 36ft sloop Red Macaw, 2 POB reporting engine failure. 16.24 Alongside and casualty taken in tow into SYH. Dover CG sitrep. 

Sunday 13/08/17 12.15 NW of Havergate Island — River Ore. Volunteer’ called to assist the 33ft barge yacht ‘Sunlight’, 4 POB with an engine seizure. Orford HM reported that presently there was no craft available or powerful enough to tow the 10 ton yacht. Because of the two very young children onboard it was decided to tow the yacht home to Woodbridge. Humber CG sitrep. After a necessary fuel stop at FX Ferry, the ‘Sunlight’ was eventually returned to her own Tide Mill Yacht Harbour berth at 16.30. after the 15 mile tow home. Humber CG sitrep. 

16.45. arrived at Ramsholt to find the powerboat under tow of a private RIB, happy to continue with tow to FX Ferry where ‘Volunteers’ crew gave the two adults and two children a medical check. Dover CG Sitrep. 

12.40 ‘Volunteer’ at Ipswich called by 32ft sloop ‘Lynx’, 2 POB reporting engine failure and unable to sail against foul wind/tide. 13.00. on-scene off Hares Creek and sloop taken in tow for SYH where safely berthed at 13.30. Dover CG aware. 

Sun 06/08/17 09.45 River Orwell. ‘Volunteer’ called by 20ft angling boat ‘Happy Days’, 2 POB and reporting engine failure. Advised to remain at anchor as ‘Volunteer’ presently engaged, but would attend when released. Later advised that craft had managed to start engine.Sunday 30/07/17 14.27 Refueling at SYH, tasked by DCG to a 3-9’s call reporting a capsized sailing dinghy, 1 person in the water possibly under the upturned hull off Shotley Marina. 14.30 away and on-scene alongside dinghy at 14.32 with no persons being visible, immediate attempts made to right dinghy. Large stoop standing by then reported that they had the casualty onboard. Alongside sloop to assess the casualty for medical attention, confirmed with DCG that none required. HLB now also on-scene and advised accordingly — stood down. Returned to right capsized dinghy which was returned with its lucky owner to Harwich Town S.C. following a final medical assessment. DCG SITREP. 

Note: the casualty confirmed that he was trapped under the upturned hull when his auto-lifejacket deployed.


Sun 23/07/17 15.44 South Shelf. Tasked by SYH to assist the 27ft sloop ‘Seastar’, 3 POB +2 dogs with engine failure in the River Orwell. 15.55. alongside sloop and towed into SYI-l Dover CG SITREP.


Sat 22/07/17 14.48 Assisted 36ft sloop ‘Touchstone’, 2 POB hard aground on West Knolls - River Deben. Attempt made at the owners request to tow the sloop off on the falling tide to no avail. FX Ferry Boat also endeavoring to assist, but with the same result. Casualties anchor laid out into deep water to aid re-floating on next tide. Dover CG SITREP.

Saturday 15/07/17 17.05. Assisting UKBF officers with suspected Immigration Incident. 18.42. Stood down.


15.30. Cobbold’s Pt. Tasked by FX Ferry HM to a report of a sloop aground at Ramsholt with a lone novice crewman onboard. Arrived on-scene- Falkenham Marshes at 15.35 and efforts made to tow the sloop into deep water on the falling spring tide. All efforts were futile, so the casualties anchor was laid out into deep water for the next high tide. Dover CG made aware with all details. 

12.36. Orwell Bridge. Tasked by Ipswich ONS to a report of a large Dutch ketch anchored mid-channel off Woolverstone and obstructing fairway for commercial vessels. 

Sunday 09/07/17 09.30 ‘Volunteer’ tasked by SYH to assist the 30ft sloop ‘Segrist’, 2 POB and reporting an engine problem in the River Orwell. 10.00 towed into SYH where safely berthed at 10.32.


Saturday 01/07/17 15.30 ‘Volunteer on patrol in the River Orwell was tasked by Humber Coastguard to assist the sloop ‘Little Dream’ at Troublesome Reach —Woodbridge, and whose lone crewman was suffering a severe panic attack. ‘Volunteer’ immediately refueled and departed SYH eight minutes later, arriving on-scene in thirty-two minutes after a trip of fifteen miles. ‘Volunteers’ crew confirmed that there were no medical issues but the young male was very distressed and wished to be taken ashore, where he was handed over into the care of Coastguards.


In addition to this ‘Volunteer’ enforced the Firework Display safety exclusion zone, and acted as ‘Crash Boat’ during the Air Display. During the last stages of the Air Display ‘Volunteer’ was tasked away by Dover Coastguard to a 3-9’s call from the 30ft sloop ‘Banjo’, whose elderly lone sailor was in difficulties east of the Deben Bar. ‘Volunteer’ soon had the sloop under tow into FX Ferry and the sailor taken ashore to awaiting Coastguards. 

Saturday 24/06/17 - Sunday 25/06/17 saw the service providing all the marine safety cover for the Felixstowe Armed Forces Weekend Event. This was primarily the safety of some twenty Dutch re-enactment Marines and their boats. The service also provided four safety swimmers during the beach assault re-enactments on each day, during which ‘Volunteer’ was called on to assist one of the Dutch boats in danger of being swept under the pier by the strong winds.

15.59 Landguard Point- rough seas, 16.05. Arrived on­ scene, nothing untoward seen. 16.01 Call to Dover CG re further info — not aware of any problem, name of 1st informant required — advised not known.

1535. Harwich harbour. Received report via phone call from MOP ashore re: a sailboarder in difficulties off the Dip. Coastguard had been informed. 15.56. Underway at speed- VTS informed.

15.10.River Orwell. Complaint received from sloop ‘Velor’ 3 POB concerning a PWC being used at high speed off Pin Mill Hard. 15.20 on-scene to investigate, PWC moored alongside barge, insufficient water to close. Report to HM ASAP.

12.33 Landguard Point, 12.40 Arrived on-scene Cobbold’s Point, FX CG Team enroute, guided by public ashore to target off Jacobs Ladder. On-scene to find target being a black/white football in netting used as pot marker. 12.50 stood down by Dover CG.

12.30 ’Volunteer’ on patrol Harwich harbour. Tasked by FX Coastwatch to a report of a possible dog caught in fishing nets off Cobbold’s Point. Permission from VTS for HSR through harbor

Sunday 11/06/17 12.13 ‘Volunteer’ in River Orwell, Collimer Point warned two speeding PWC to slow down.


17.11 Harwich Harbour Ferry, with engine failure and aground off Shotley Marina. Dover CG aware, ‘Volunteer’ on-scene and seven passengers taken off and put ashore at Harwich. 17.35 ‘Volunteer’ stood down by Dover CG.

Saturday 10/06/17 12.45 ‘Volunteer’ on routine patrol in Harwich harbour requested by VTS to apprehend two PWC operating at speed (The Harbour Patrol Launch had been unable to catch them). Both apprehended by ‘Volunteer’, warning given and names taken for action by H.H.C.B.

18.00 sloop taken in tow alongside ‘Volunteer’ and berthed on SYH fuel berth. Dover CG advised accordingly.

16.52 Tasked by SYH Harbour Master to assist the 33 ft sloop ‘Carrina’ 5 POB reporting electrical failure in River Orwell.

14.35 Tasked by Dover CG to a report of a submerged canoe off Dovercourt Bay. ‘Volunteer’ at speed through Harwich harbour and on-scene at 14.41. To find section of Kayak- bows up. No indication of recent use or ID, DCG advised accordingly and stood down. Section of wreckage landed at Harwich.

11.35 ’Dolma’ cut free and under tow of ‘Volunteer’, Dover CG advised bound for Harwich — Bathside Bay where safely moored by 13.00.

Sunday 04/06/17 11.08 ‘Volunteer’ on routine patrol of seafront tasked by Deben Pilots to assist the 25ft sloop ‘Dolma’ 1 POB and foul of pot-marker off Knolls.


17.40 Berthed at SYH, monitored call to Dover CG from craft ‘Alaska 360’, 6 POB reporting engine failure in Holbrook Bay and requesting assistance. 17.31. tasked by DCG to assist, but stood down off Ramsey as craft had started engine. 

16.33. Nothing found so returned to 1st informant who confirmed same object, Dover CG advised of actions and stood down. 

Saturday 03/06/17 16.20 Felixstowe Seafront — Manor End, hailed by MOP ashore with Binnos reporting object being blown approx 2 miles offshore in line with Felixstowe Pier. ‘Volunteer’ at speed to approx position finding a full size inflatable toy “Spiderman”. Dover CG advised that ‘Volunteer’ would backtrack on approx offshore wind blown course of inflatable toy just in case its young owner had at some stage been with the toy?


Monday 22/05/17 The carcass was inspected by the Natural History Museum UK Cetacean Strandings Team, who took tissue samples for analysis, and positively identified the whale as a Common Rorqual or Finback Whale. The team also confirmed its injuries as being consistent with being hit by a large ship. These Baleen Whales can live up to 90 years and reach 26m in length. This specimen was 1 3m and weighed approx ten tons. By late on Monday, the Receiver of Wrecks had relinquished ownership of the carcass to become the responsibility of the local authority. 

Sunday 21/05/17 ‘Volunteer’ on patrol of Felixstowe Seafront to assist Coastguard Teams with the H&S Exclusion Zone set around the whale carcass, which continued to decompose in the warm conditions.


At approx 19.40 the Whale carcass was brought ashore by the fresh onshore wind in front of St Edmunds - Sea Road Felixstowe, then being washed further north into Pier Bight where it remained. 

14.30. ‘Volunteer’ investigated a report of a further whale carcass sighted some miles offshore in the Harwich Approaches. Photographs were again requested by Dover CG for the Receiver of Wrecks. ‘Volunteers’ crew were able to confirm that the carcass was also that of a Baleen Whale, probably a large Minke with injuries consistent with being in collision with a vessel. Some sixty photographs were sent directly from ‘Volunteer’ electronically to the Coastguard — Receiver of Wrecks. No further action was required by any Agency at this time. 

Saturday 20/05/17 12.28 Fishes Royal Incident, ‘Volunteer on routine patrol of the River Ore observed the carcass of a dead whale above Long Reach. The mud was too deep to deploy a crewman to investigate further and Humber CG were advised that the carcass was believed to be that of a Minke Whale calf. Dover CG requested further information and photographs for the Receiver of Wrecks.


09.58 ‘Volunteer’ tasked by DCG to the casualty, and arrived on-scene at 10.12. It was confirmed that her crew were safe and well, and the sloop was taken in tow bound for Ipswich Haven Marina where she was safely berthed by 13.30. 

Sunday 07/05/17 09.55 ‘Volunteer’ at SYH monitored a Pan-Pan call to Dover CG from the sloop ‘Catherine’, 2 POB reporting an engine failure in Holbrook Bay and requesting assistance.

13.30 Catherine was locked into Ipswich Wet-Dock and safely berthed after a tow of 14 Nm.

11.38 Harwich harbour with increasing winds and a strong ebb tide, the casualty was put on a long tow to lessen the strain on this vintage sloop.

10.20 the casualty was undertow of ‘Volunteer’ bound for Neptune Marina, Ipswich.

10.12 ‘Volunteer’ alongside Catherine and able to confirm that her crew were safe and well.

Sunday 07/05/17 09.55. Suffolk Yacht Harbour. ‘Volunteers’ crew with UKBF Officers intercepted a Pan-Pan call to Dover Coastguard from the stoop ‘Catherine’, 2 POB off Holbrook Bay reporting engine failure and unable to sail safely through Harwich harbour. Humber Coastguard responding to Pan-Pan and ‘Volunteer’ tasked immediately giving an ETA on-scene of 13 minutes.

Sunday 30/04/17 12.47 ‘Volunteer’ returning from her first sea patrol to the River Orwell was alerted by the Harbour Master to a small inflatable dinghy with engine failure and three persons onboard being swept upriver by the strong wind and spring tide, and also being overwhelmed by waves and spray. 


Monday 17/04/17 - 13.46 ‘Volunteer’ was tasked to assist the sloop ‘Hysteric’ suffering an engine failure, into Suffolk Yacht Harbour where she was moored. 

Sunday 16/04/17 - 15.47 ‘Volunteer’ on patrol in the River Deben was tasked by Dover Coastguard to assist the sloop ‘Nomad’ reported aground on a falling tide in the River Ore. ‘Volunteer’ covered a distance of six miles to the casualty with one person onboard and was on scene within 15 minutes. The 30 ft sloop was towed into deep water where her bilges were sounded before sailing safely on her way home. 

Saturday 15/04/17 - 14.20 ‘Volunteer’ on patrol of River Orwell was requested by the Harwich lifeboat to assist with the casualty ‘Sweet Promise’ a 40 ft sloop on passage from Lowestoft to Woolverstone. The sloop with two persons onboard, suffered an engine problem and was unable to sail against the strong ebb tide. She was taken in tow by ‘Volunteer’ and safely berthed at Woolverstone by 17.15. 

Not the busiest Easter for the service as overall the coastal areas were unusually quiet. However busy enough to keep the crews on their toes. The object of our shakedown patrols is to ensure that our patrol lifeboat and equipment are up to par, and that our crews and new volunteers have benefited from their winter training programme which culminated in a two day Sea Survival Course.

* 2017 *


Monday 29/08/16 - 12.38 ‘Volunteers’ crew on routine patrol observed a group of five males jumping off the Landguard Point old jetty. ‘Volunteer’ closed in to warn the group whilst Felixstowe Coastguard were also requested to attend to further warn the group of the immanent dangers of ‘Tomb-stoning’.

We are unfortunately seeing an increase in instances of mainly young males jumping into the sea from the rock armour groynes or from the piers. We have had three such incidents recently reported involving Felixstowe Pier and the Landguard Point old jetty.

The Coast Patrol, Coastguard and Police have all attended to warn the youths. We believe that Southwold Pier has had similar problems concerning this dangerous game known as ‘Tomb-stoning’ for obvious reasons.

It has become a national problem with there being many initiatives launched to discourage ‘Tomb-stoning’ which has caused many hundreds if accidents requiring hospital treatment and well over a dozen fatalities. Injuries from ‘Tomb-stoning are mainly head, back, spinal, broken lower limbs and puncture injuries caused when the victim has jumped onto hidden underwater obstructions. Some of these injuries have been life changing and resulted in the victim being confined to a wheelchair for life.

Our latest incident on Sunday was the second in a week, and involved a group of male visitors from Bedfordshire jumping off the Landguard Point jetty, which in its self is in poor condition, let alone them having no consideration of the dangerous strong tides, eddies and unpredictable waves or indeed the presence of underwater obstructions in this hazardous location.


Sunday 28/08/16 -15.35. ‘Volunteer’ went to the assistance of the 40 ft sloop ‘Black Adder’ with 6 POB aground on the Deben Bar.

15.47 Towed off into deep water and back out of the Deben where the stoops bilges and steering gear were confirmed as undamaged. ‘Black Adder’ was put to anchor offshore awaiting sufficient water over the Bar, Dover Coastguard advised.


Saturday 27/8/16 - 15.10 ‘Volunteer’ called to assist the 32 ft sloop ‘Pure Inspiration’ with 2 POB aground off Deer Park — River Orwell, Dover Coastguard advised.

16.25 Towed off into deep water where the sloops bilges and steering gear were checked for damage. Being no damage the sloop was able to continue on its way.

Sunday 14/08/16 - 11.26 ‘Volunteer’ at Orwell Bridge tasked with the Walton lifeboat to the 26 ft angling boat ‘Paddys Pride’ 5 POB reporting stem gear foul of pot marker 1 mile off Felixstowe Port and requesting assistance. 

11.50 Casualty located and on-scene 1 mile off the Naze Tower - Walton. (DCG sitrep) 

12.01 Walton lifeboat on-scene and attempt made to clear casualties stern gear. 

12.30 ‘Paddys Pride’ cut free and under tow of Walton lifeboat bound for Titchmarsh

Marina, ‘Volunteer released to resume patrol. 

14.45 ‘Volunteer’ tasked to assist the broken down 20 ft motor cruiser ‘Lucky Dip’, 1 POB off Slumpy Hard Freston. 

5.00 alongside casualty (DCG sitrep) and prep made for tow back to SYH. 

16.45 ‘Volunteer’ tasked to a Pan Pan (Urgency) call from the sloop ‘Pippit’ moored off Pin Mill. 

16.50. ‘Volunteer’ stood down by DCG as Pan Pan downgraded to non­e emergency. 

17.30  Put on standby by DCG re a report of two persons in the water in difficulties 1 mile N of Walton Pier. 

17.35. stood down. Walton lifeboat & Beach Patrol tasked. 


Saturday 13/08/16 - 13.55. ‘Volunteer’ on training sortie at Deben Bar Knolls tasked to the 26 ft sloop ‘Kentish Plover’ with 2 POB reporting stem gear foul of pot marker 1 mile E of Felixstowe Pier, and requesting assistance. 

14.05. ‘Volunteer’ on-scene alongside casualty (DCG sitrep) Attempt made to clear pot marker and casualty free by 14.15. Stood by whilst casualty checked rudder and engine re any damage. 

14.30. ‘Kentish Plover’ now safely under own power bound for Pin Mill. (DCG sitrep) and ‘Volunteer’ resuming patrol. 

16.05 ‘Volunteer’ in River Orwell tasked to assist the 31 ft sloop ‘Troika’ with 2 POB off No 4 Buoy reporting an engine problem and insufficient wind to sail into marina for repairs. 

16.09 ‘Volunteer’ alongside casualty ready for tow into SYH. 

16.30   ‘Troika’ safely berthed in West Harbour. (DCG sitrep).

Sunday 07/08/16 14.40 ‘Volunteer’ requested to standby

15.35  ‘Volunteer’ responded to call from sloop ‘Take Five’ reporting to Dover CG, 3 children in a swapped dinghy in difficulties off Levington. imediate call to DCG advising that ‘Volunteer’ was proceeding to area. 

15.39 ‘Volunteer’ on-scene and nothing to be found. 

15.43 alongside ‘Take Five’ for more information and now told that casualty was heading upriver. 

15.50 alongside dinghy in a swamped condition, 3 POB + dog, offer of help declined so occupants advised to don lifejackets owing to dangerous condition of dinghy before being escorted back to Pin Mill where the crew were safely seen ashore at 16.10. DCG advised accordingly.


Saturday 06/08/16 - 13.06 ‘Volunteer’ tasked by Dover CG to the 9m Angling Boat ‘Nicole Anna’ with 10 POB and an engine problem 2 miles off Felixstowe, Harwich lifeboat also tasked. 

13.16 ‘Volunteer’ on-scene standing by to assist the lifeboat which towed the Nicole Anna into Harwich. 

14.40  ‘Volunteer’ re-tasked to tow the ‘Nicole Anna’ back to her home port of Ipswich where she was safely berthed by 15.30. Dover CG advised ‘Volunteer’ resuming patrol.


Sunday 31/07/16 - 12.36 ‘Volunteer’ on routine patrol of Felixstowe seafront observed a group of five motorcyclists ride around the barrier at the Dip and continue on along the prom where the public were present. Not only was this a danger to the public but also an infringement of byelaws. As ‘Volunteer’ was hove-to close inshore to monitor the group her crew received numerous complaints from beach users, a call was then immediately put through on her police radio for an officer to attend. 

12.50 an officer arrived on-scene to liaise with the group whilst ‘Volunteer’ also remained on-scene with the police officer. The group were courteous and eventually left pushing their motorcycles back along to the Dip prior to departing. 

13.19 ‘Volunteer’ at the Woodbridge Haven Buoy monitored a DSC Distress Alert From a craft, followed by a Pan Pan message from Humber Coastguard re the angling boat ‘Little Mo’ believed to be in the Bawdsey area. ‘Volunteer’ offered her assistance and was immediately tasked to search for the angling boat, however at 13.25. The ‘Little Mo’ was reported as being on her mooring at Felixstowe Ferry. ‘Volunteer was then re-tasked by HCG to confirm that the angling boat and her crew were indeed safe and well. By 13.30.’Volunteer’ was alongside and able to confirm with HCG that it had been a false alarm.


Sunday 17/07/16 - 09.00 Suffolk Yacht Harbour, ‘Volunteers’ crew informed by a party of anglers that their colleagues 20 ft angling boat ‘Alfie Moon’ with 3 POB had departed SYH at 04.00 for a days fishing out at the Sunk, some 20 miles offshore. 

They had received a text reporting that the ‘Alfie Moon’ had suffered a steering problem and now required assistance. Dover Coastguard were not aware of the incident until informed by Coast Patrol. A call was immediately broadcast on the emergency Ch 16 by DCG to the ‘Alfie Moon’, but nothing was heard from the angling boat in reply. 

Consecutive further calls to the casualty also received a negative response. By 09.15 ‘Volunteer’

Saturday 09/07/16 - 15.28 ‘Volunteer’ on routine patrol of Felixstowe seafront alerted by Windsurf Club to a lone windsurfer in difficulties south of the Woodbridge Haven Buoy. 

15.31. Dover Coastguard advised, Windsurfer located and ‘Volunteer’ on-scene. Windsurfer taken onboard and no medical assistance required. He was returned ashore with all his equipment (broken mast). Cause of incident — broken mast. 

15.57. On routine patrol of Harwich Harbour ‘Volunteer’ was alerted by the VTS to a capsized catamaran off the Landguard Terminal with 2 POB. 

15.59. Standing by as attempts made to right catamaran by crew. 

16.03. Cat now safely underway, no further assistance required, VTS advised. 

16.05. Dover Coastguard sitrep from ‘Volunteer’ advising that she was aware of a sloop in difficulties off Wrabness — River Stour. The sloop has advised that she had fouled her propeller on a mooring and was caught fast, although attempts had been made to cut her free by a free diver. There was a danger that the strong wind and tide conditions could cause serious damage. 

16.15. ‘Volunteer’ on-scene alongside casualty, the 40 ft sloop ‘Centayne’ 3 POB including an infant. 

16.50 Dover Coastguard sitrep, rope had been cut free and sloop was now under tow bound for Suffolk Yacht Harbour where she was safely berthed by 18.20. 


Sunday 03/07/16 - 12.51 ‘Volunteer’ departing the River Deben tasked by Humber Coastguard to assist the 30 ft sloop ‘Akele’, 2 POB reporting caught on fishing gear at the Cork Ledge. 13.31. on-scene to assist the Walton Lifeboat, ‘Akele’ cut free and able to make her own way back to the River Crouch. 

16.25  Harwich Harbour, ‘Volunteer’ went to the assistance of the 28 ft sloop ‘Corinne’, 1 POB with an engine problem and in danger of being swept down onto commercial shipping, although her anchor was deployed. The sloop was soon under tow and pulled clear of the main channel. The ‘Corinne’ was left at anchor off Shotley where her owner could affect repairs to the engine. 

Saturday 02/07/16 - 12.02 ‘Volunteer on routine patrol of the River Orwell went to the assistance of the 40 ft Catamaran ‘Sekhmet’, 3 POB with ajarumed rudder and being swept down onto moored craft by the strong ebb tide. ‘Volunteer’ was able to pull the Catamaran out into the fairway, thus avoiding a collision with other craft before taking her safely back to Woolverstone where she was moored at the Royal Harwich Yacht Club. 

17.25  ‘Volunteers’ medic-crew ashore at Suffolk Yacht Harbour attended a female who had suffered a badly scald left foot when a kettle had been upset onboard her yacht. The lady refused professional medical help at this stage so her injury was checked for cooling and treated with burns gel. She was given additional burns gel applications and advised to seek medical help when convenient.

SUNDAY 12/06/16 -  11.45 ‘Volunteer’ on routine patrol of River Deben - Ramsholt Marshes monitored Pan-Pan Urgency Message from Humber Coastguard requesting any sightings of the overdue 32 ft sloop ‘Unity’ 1 POB on passage from Den Helder to Lowestoft. 

Search made of lower reaches up to the ‘Rocks’ prior to coming about bound for sea. 12.14. Informed by Felixstowe NC! that a sighting of the ‘Unity’ had been reported in Harwich Harbour, and could this be checked by ‘Volunteer’. 

13.00  On scene at Harwich Quay to investigate possible sighting, ‘Volunteer’ confirmed sloop very closely fitting the description of the overdue craft and Dutch moored there, but confirmed as not being the ‘Unity’. 

13.30  Humber Coastguard advised accordingly and of ‘Volunteers’ intentions to commence search of River Orwell and Marinas. 

13.20 ‘Volunteer’ arrived SYH to refuel and to confirm that ‘Unity was not present there. 

13.45 Call to FX Coastguard to check their search areas prior to commencing search of Orwell. 

14.15 departed SYH and at 14.20. Pan-Pan cancelled as ‘Unity’ had been reported safe and well NE of Lowestoft. 14.30. ‘Volunteer’ stood down.

Sunday 05/06/16 - 11.05 ‘Volunteer’ just entering the River Deben tasked by Thames Coastguard to the 26ft sloop ‘Kentish Plover’ with 2 POB reporting an engine failure in Harwich Harbour and drifting towards shipping. 

11.21  ‘Volunteer’ alongside the casualty which was towed out of the channel. The sloop was bound for the River Deben and her crew not confident to enter the river under sail only were towed onto a mooring at Waldringfield by 13.30. 

15.10  ‘Volunteer’ refuelling at Levington Marina was tasked by the Harbour Master to the 30ft sloop ‘Jacana’ with 2 POB reporting an engine failure off Fagbury Point — River Orwell and unable to sail against the strong spring ebb tide. The sloop was take in tow and was safely berthed on her mooring by 15.40. 


Saturday 04/06/16 - 14.22 ‘Volunteer on routine patrol of Felixstowe Seafront tasked by Dover Coastguard to a Mayday call from the 50ft sloop ‘Barnstormer’ with 3 POB reporting an engine failure and now, aground on the Deben Bar on a falling tide. 

14.28  ‘Volunteer’ on-scene alongside casualty and crews wellbeing confirmed as safe, so towed off into deep water. The sloops bilges were confirmed as dry prior to the casualty requesting being towed home to Shotley Marina where the sloop was safely moored at 16.20. 


Sunday 28/05/16 -12.07 ‘Volunteer’ on routine patrol to Felixstowe Ferry observed several people attending a person lying prone at the base of the sea-wall at Landguard Common. 

Although there was an onshore swell running, a crewman / medic was put ashore just as a community 1st responder also arrived on-scene. Our crewman confirmed that an elderly man had slipped on the sea defences, had fallen and had sustained a head injury and a suspected broken right ankle. 

12.20 Ambulance arrived in the Manor End Car Park, but could not get any closer to the casualty lying some 500m away. The casualty was given Entonox and his broken ankle put into a splint. Ambulance staff suggested that a ‘medivac’ by lifeboat should be attempted, however ‘Volunteers’ Coxn declined this suggestion as it would be to dangerous to the paramedics and the casualty in the increasing NE ground swell coming ashore. This decision was passed onto Dover Coastguard who concurred. 

13.20 Additional ambulance arrived from the Colchester area with a special wheeled litter with which to ‘medivac’ the casualty who’s condition had now deteriorated. By 13.35 the 69 year old casualty accompanied by his wife was taken to Ipswich A&E. 

Our crewman was stood down at 14.05. Owing to the increased ground swell had to board ‘Volunteer’ at the View Point. 


Sunday 22/05/16 - 15.30 ‘Volunteer’ on her PM routine patrol of the Orwell observed a light fuel oil slick off Pin Mill. The slick giving off a strong aroma covered an area of 600m x 20m and was moving downstream on the spring ebb tide. The ONS and Thames CG were advised and at 16.15. ‘Volunteer’ was re-tasked by Dover Coastguard to endeavour to identify the source. Fortunately the strong ebb, warm temperature and rain shower later dissipated the slick as it moved downriver. 


Saturday 21/05/16 - 10.49 ‘Volunteer’ on routine patrol River Orwell received radio call ex yacht ‘Astria’, reporting another yacht aground off Trimley. 11.00. ‘Volunteer’ on scene and the 26ft sloop ‘Maud’ with 2 POB was soon towed off into deep water. 


Sunday 01/05/16 - 12.30 ‘Volunteer’ in the River Deben tasked to apprehend and advise two PWC users observed speeding out of the designated Recreational Areas. 

13.31  ‘Volunteer’ off Felixstowe seafront tasked to assist the 38 ft sloop ‘Yolo’ in the River Orwell reporting an engine problem and requiring assistance. 

13.39  ‘Volunteer’ on-scene to tow the sloop with 3 persons onboard into Suffolk Yacht Harbour


Thursday 28/04/16 - 11.15 Volunteer’s tasked to attend an elderly yachtsman who had sustained a head injury when the mast that he was erecting collapsed.

The 83 year old man who already had a mild heart condition sustained a 4 cm long wound to his skull that was bleeding profusely. He was administered first-aid by one of our Offshore Medics and taken to Ipswich A&E where he received a CAT scan and six stitches 


Easter Monday 28/3/16. Patrol cancelled and crew stood down owing to severe weather warning. Inshore Forecast was: Rain or showers. Visibility: mod-poor. Wind: SW Gale 8 increasing to Severe Storm 10 soon. Sea conditions: mod-very rough or high. Traffic movements into/out of Harwich Harbour were restricted and the Pilotage service suspended. 


Sunday 27/3/16 - 13.55 ’Volunteer’ recovered the damaged dinghy from Trimley Marshes and towed it into SYH where the Harbour Master confirmed that it had been reported missing. The owner later arrived to claim the dinghy and reported that its outboard engine must have been stolen, and the dinghy probably cast adrift the engine lock still in place confirmed as much so a statement was take for Police.  

13.10. Gale Warning update from Coastguard. Severe SW Gale 9 expected soon. 

Saturday 26/3/16 - Gale 8 expected later. 11.20. Deben Bar. ‘Volunteers’ crew noted a windsurfer off his board for some considerable time. Offer of assistance declined, resumed patrol.  


Good Friday 25/3/16 - 10.30. ‘Volunteers’ crew tasked by Ipswich ONS to warn 4 PWC operators entering River Orwell at speed.  

10.45. Tasked by SYH Berthing Master to the assistance of a sloop with an engine problem in River Orwell. Sloops engine re started and ‘Volunteer’ stood down.  

12.22. Tasked by Humber Coastguard to a Pan-Pan from a craft aground on the Deben Bar. 12.31. ‘Volunteer’ stood down as craft had re floated safely. Pan-Pan cancelled.  

13.18. Tasked by Dover Coastguard to a report of a swamped drifting 10ft dinghy off Trimley Marshes, no persons involved. 

13.31 ‘Volunteer’ on-scene to find that dinghy with oars and fuel tank was severely holed and could not be towed any distance. Taken inshore and pulled onto the seawall where moored, Coastguard advised. 


Friday 12/3/16 - 19.30 requested to launch by Suffolk Police re: coastal search for two persons threatening a suicide pact. 20.15 stood down as incident resolved. 

 Incident Report: Sunday 04/10/15 

11.40 ‘Volunteer’ advised by TH Coastguard to be on the lookout for a 19ft Shetland motor boat, the ‘Elenor’ reported missing overnight from Harwich Green moorings. Search made from Felixstowe to Orford Ness. Nothing found. 

16.35 ‘Volunteers’ crew observed a Drascombe Lugger sailing in the Trimley Bird Reserve Lagoon which is an AONB site. On exit the sailor was warned and advised accordingly. 

16.45 Tasked by SYH Mooring Master who advised that a Campion type powerboat with 4 POB had just left the marina at 35 knots and was heading down river, and that he had alerted Harwich VTS to the danger. Powerboat not visible to ‘Volunteer’ who went in pursuit towards Harwich but nothing found. 

17.45 Approached by owner of 38ft sloop moored in Orwell reporting a theft of several items from onboard. He had reported the incident to the Police who referred him to Coast Patrol. Report taken from owner re: the lack of Police action (passed onto Police).

Incident Report: Sunday 06/09/15

 11.03 ‘Volunteer’ on routine patrol of the River Orwell tasked by Orwell Navigation Service & Harwich VTS to monitor the progress and behaviour of a group of 12 PWC reported entering the Orwell. (Port of Ipswich Bylaws No 78. HHA Bylaws - PWC are not permitted in or near any navigational channel used by commercial vessels). Apprehended off Levington Marina where the group were advised of speed limits and restrictions. 

15.24 ‘Volunteer’ received a direct call from the sloop ‘Fereale’ with 2 persons onboard reporting being held fast by her rudder foul of a mooring buoy south of the Bay Buoy - River Orwell, and requesting immediate assistance. 

Thames Coastguard aware and ‘Volunteer’ on-scene at 15.36 By 16.04 the 40 ft sloop was free and after her stern gear was checked was able to proceed under her own power.

Incident Report: Sunday 20/09/15 

Coast Patrol Rescue Service tasked by Suffolk Constabulary to continue a coastal search for a missing elderly man. 

Mr Norman Carter (85) missing since Monday, had last been reported as being in the Felixstowe area and probably in the vicinity of the Spa Gardens, no further movements are known. A large scale search of the immediate area including the beach and rock-armour groynes had already been made during the week. 

With this in mind the CPRS had devised a drift-plan based on the weather condition, tidal patterns for the area and other considerations at the last sighting, in fear that the man may have entered the water. 

At 10.55 ‘Volunteer’ commenced the search north from the View Point when at 11.14 her crew received a call from Police confirming the report of a body at Orford Island. By 11.14 ‘Volunteer’ had a Police Inspector onboard and was underway receiving further instructions and arriving on-scene at Orford Ness at 11.27 where two officers were already attending. At this time it was not believed that the badly decomposed body was that of Norman Carter so the area was designated as a crime-scene. 

‘Volunteer’ was stood down at 12.01 and resumed patrol searching the coastline back to the River Deben, where her crew had pre-planed to scatter a deceased persons ashes. ‘Volunteer’ then commenced her search of the seafront, rock groynes, under the pier, Landguard and the Ports Quay areas along to the Trinity Terminal. In total a slow speed search had been made of some 16 Nm of coastline including some difficult areas by ‘Volunteers’ crewman being put ashore to search on foot, with nothing untoward being found. 

15.05 ‘Volunteer’ on patrol of the River Orwell apprehended a ski boat operating out of the designated Recreational Zone (Byelaw 77. No person shall engage or take part in water skiing except with the written permission of the Authority and then only in such areas designated by the Authority). A visual security sweep of a sensitive marine infra­structure was also carried out on the patrol, with ‘Volunteer’ arriving back at SYH at 17.30.


 FVCPRS Incidents from Friday 3rd April 2015 

Regular patrols commenced on Friday 3rd April with the usual ‘shake-down patrols over the Easter weekend. Within three hours ‘Volunteer’ was tasked by Thames Coastguard to a Mayday situation on the notorious Deben Bar. The 28ft sloop ‘Moien’ had run aground when entering the river and its four crew had reported that they were in danger of breaking up. ‘Volunteer’ was tasked at 12.52 along with the Harwich ILB and Coastguard teams to the casualty, ‘Volunteer’ arriving first on-scene at 13.03. Unfortunately whilst trying to get alongside the casualty in the easterly swell’ Volunteer’ was picked up by a large wave which caused her to ground damaging her port engine and become swamped. Fortunately another vessel in deep water went to her assistance pulling her clear where she was anchored for temporary repairs by her crew. Meanwhile the Harwich ILB had arrived to take the casualties crew ashore to safety. The damaged ‘Moien’ was later recovered by the Ferry Harbour Master.

On Sunday 5th April ‘Volunteer’ was involved again with the Harwich ILB and Coastguard Teams from Felixstowe and Shingle Street in the pre-arranged Thames Coastguard Exercise New Dawn, Ironically the rescue scenario being very similar to events on Friday. The object of the excise was to test inter-service working and proved a resounding success. At 11.42 ‘Volunteer’ had been refuelled and was tasked by Coastguard to the broken down 24ft angling boat with three persons onboard off the Pye End. By 12.18 ‘Volunteer’ had the casualty in tow bound for Titchmarsh Marina — Essex. 

Monday 6th April. 11.00 ‘ Volunteer’ on routine patrol of the Orwell received a call from the 30ft sloop ‘Bluewater South’ aground off Potter Point and requesting assistance. ‘Volunteer’ arrived on-scene at 11.05 to find that that the sloop with 2 persons onboard had re-floated without any damage. 

Sunday 19th April. 12.17 ‘Volunteer’ already attending a minor incident in the Orwell received a call from the 42ft ketch ‘Andax’ with two persons onboard requesting immediate assistance and reporting an engine failure and unable to sail against the strong spring tide, and in danger of being swept against the Rock —Armour under the Orwell Bridge. 12.20 ‘Volunteer’ on-scene and casualty taken under tow to Levington. 

Sunday 26th April. 13.29. ‘Volunteer’ in Harwich Harbour received a call from 34ft racing sloop ‘Rock Lobster’ with five persons onboard reporting a steering failure and at anchor in the fairway. 13.40 ‘Volunteer alongside the casualty and preparing to into Levington Marina. 

Sat 2nd May 1450. ‘Volunteer’ on routine patrol of the River Orwell was tasked by Thames Coastguard to a Pan — Pan call from the 25ft angling boat ‘Nomadic’ (new craft on maiden voyage) with two persons onboard with engine failure off the Pye Sands. ‘Volunteer’ arrived on scene at 15.00. and casualty taken in tow for Titchniarsh Marine where she was attended by Walton Coastguard. 

Sunday 3rd May 11.29. River Orwell. ‘Volunteer’ observed a small inflatable yacht tender with two persons onboard in difficulties off Downham Reach. The tenders outboard engine would not start and the crew were unable to row against the strong wind and tide. Thames Coastguard were advise that they were being taken back to the R.H.Y.C. 

12.57 ‘Volunteer’ Tasked by Thames Coastguard to a Pan — Pan call from the 26ft motor cruiser ‘Starturn’ with 6 persons and three dogs onboard reporting an engine fire and anchored off Fagbury Point- River Orwell. 13.00. ‘Volunteer’ on-scene to find that the cruisers remote safety system had extinguished the fire leaving the engine space and bilges contaminated with smoke and fumes. The casualties crew and dogs all unhurt, were immediately taken onboard ‘Volunteer’ whilst our crew ensured that fire was extinguished, and the fuel and electrical systems were isolated. ‘Volunteer’ then took 4 persons and the dogs into Suffolk Yacht Harbour for their safety, before returning to the ‘Starturn’ with two of her male crew with the intention of ‘Volunteer’ towing the casualty back to the Ipswich Marina where she was berthed safely by 16.00.


Eventful Weekend for Felixstowe Coast Patrol 

Saturday 18 Oct 11 .35. Location River Stour


Wrabness. ‘Guardian’ whilst providing safety cover for the ‘Two Rivers Canoe Challenge’ Charity Event which raisers money for the Ipswich Hospital Oncology Unit, was tasked by Thames Coastguard to assist a broken down angling boat off Shotley.


The 22 ft boat ‘Blye of Wight’ with three POB was taken in tow back to Mistley Marina.


At 14.40. Whilst returning to the canoeists ‘Guardian’ went to the assistance of a 24 ft power boat with a fouled propeller and two POB. ‘Guardian’ took the boat ‘Just another toy’ in tow for Ipswich whilst attempts were made to free its propeller.


Sunday 19 Oct 14.50. Location River Ore Bar. “Guardian providing safety cover for the Two Rivers Canoe Challenge - canoeists on passage Woodbridge to Orford Quay”.


The group of six canoeists whilst negotiating the confused seas over the bar, having successfully entered the river Ore, soon became separated from the group leader, a very experienced sea kayaker. ‘Guardians’ immediate head count confirmed that one of the group was missing and could not be seen. Whilst the group were instructed to stay together and remain on-scene, ‘Guardian’ commenced an immediate search of the shallows over the bar momentarily grounding herself in the process. Unfortunately nothing was found so Coastguard was alerted for additional assistance. Meanwhile Rescue Helicopter 125 was scrambled from Wattisham whilst ‘Guardian’ continued to search the breaking wave’s seaward of the bar. The canoeist had been missing for eleven minutes when he was located clinging to his white hulled Kayak by ‘Guardians’ crew. Coastguard were immediately informed and the conscious casualty was taken onboard, where a quick medical assessment by ‘Guardians’ Offshore-Medic crew was conducted. Fortunately the middle aged male had suffered no immersion injuries and had only mild hypothermia and shock, requiring no further medical help so Rescue 125 was stood down. The casualty was put into a warming bag, given a warm drink and a partial change of dry clothing, following which he expressed his wish to continue the passage to Orford. ‘Guardian’ was requested by Coastguard to stay with the group until they were all safely ashore at Orford, where the casualty was given a final medical check and reminded of the symptoms of ‘secondary drowning’


Rescuers Comments: This happy outcome could so easily have been a tragedy but for the casualty being a very experienced sea canoeist, and knowing to stay with his Kayak, having all the vital safety equipment and above all the will to survive. It is vital that sea canoeists- kayakers paddle in at least pairs and to have all the necessary safety equipment and if possible wear bright clothing in order to aid rescuers.

This happy outcome was helped by the present high water temperature being at its highest during September October in the UK.           

Saturday 27 September 2014            A long day for ‘Guardian’


15.25.  ‘Guardian’ on routine patrol off Landguard was tasked by Thames Coastguard to a small inflatable yacht tender with one adult and two children onboard with a broken down engine and unable to row against the strong ebb tide in the River Stour. 15.50.’ Guardian’ was on-scene having covered the 10 Nm distance and soon had the three people safely onboard with their tender in tow. They were all taken back to their 36 ft sloop ‘Ruby’ moored off Wrabness.


16.18.  ‘Guardian’ was immediately tasked again by Coastguard to the angling boat ‘Lydia Rosena’ with five persons onboard and broken down 1.5 Nm south of the Roughs Towers. By 16.50 after covering the 15 Nm and locating the angling boat’ Guardian’ was on-scene and preparing to tow the casualty home to Titchmarsh Marina — Essex. The ‘Lydia Rosena’ was safely back on her own berth by 19.00., a round trip for ‘Guardian’ of some 30 Nm and then she had to cover the return distance of another 10 Nm home to Suffolk Yacht Harbour where she arrived at 20.05. Her crew then having to refuel, remove her equipment and wash her down.


During the course of the days routine patrols and incidents commencing at 09.00. ‘Guardian’ had covered a total distance of 60 Nm. Photos of these incidents are available to download from our website.

16.18.  ‘Guardian’ was immediately tasked again by Coastguard to the angling boat ‘Lydia Rosena’ with five persons onboard and broken down 1.5 Nm south of the Roughs Towers. By 16.50 after covering the 15 Nm and locating the angling boat’ Guardian’ was on-scene and preparing to tow the casualty home to Titchmarsh Marina Essex. The ‘Lydia Rosena’ was safely back on her own berth by 19.00., a round trip for ‘Guardian’ of some 30 Nm and then she had to cover the return distance of another 10 Nm home to Suffolk Yacht Harbour where she arrived at 20.05. Her crew then having to refuel, remove her equipment and wash her down.


During the course of the days routine patrols and incidents commencing at 09.00. ‘Guardian’ had covered a total distance of 60 Nm. Photos of these incidents are available to download from our website.

Sunday 7th September

09.45 'Volunteer' tasked by Coastguard to assist Felixstowe and Shingle Street Coastguard Teams searching an area from Cobbolds Pt to the River Deben for a vulnerable adult maple reported missing overnight and was last seen at this location. 10.57 'Volunteer' stood down as missing man found safe and well at Kings Fleet Marshes.

16.40 'Volunteer' on her final patrol of the day went to the assistance of the 21ft Hunter Class Fin-Keel racing yacht 'Rafiki' with two persons onboard and hard aground on Andrews Shoal off Landguard.

Being a low water spring tide it was impossible to attempt a tow off although the sloop was working heavily in the increasing winds. 'Volunteer' was forced to stand off close by the sloop which was on her beam ends and taking spray.

On the flood tide with an increased wind 'Volunteer' tow was made fast and the yacht was safely refloated and taken in tow for Suffolk Yacht Harbour where the 'Rafiki' was safely berthed at 17.00

31st August 12.15

'Volunteer' on patrol of the Orwell was alerted by yachtsmen to a light fuel oil slick approx 600m x 50m Potter Pt. Reports were made to Coastguard and Orwell VTS and 'Volunteer' was tasked by Coastguard to follow the slicks drift in an endeavour to identify the source. (Source identified).

Monday 25th August

15.46 'Volunteer' on patrol off Pin Mill tasked by Coastguard to a report of an upturned
dinghy in rough conditions off the Deben Bar. Owing to rough head seas it took 'Volunteer' 27 minutes to cover the 10 Nm of distance. Nothing untoward was found so a search  was commenced south to Cobbolds Pt, with still nothing being found. 'Volunteer' was stood down at 16.30 as a dinghy had been washed ashore in the Deben and it was confirmed that nobody had been onboard.

Saturday 16th Augus 16.35

'Volunteer' on patrol off Landguard was tasked by Coastguard to a report from a sloop reporting a possible windsurfer or Kayaka in difficulties some 800m offshore between East Lane and the River Ore. 'Volunteer' covered the six mile distance and was on-scene within six minutes with nothing untoward found. A box search was continued for one hour with nothing being found. It was later believed after interviewing the sloops crew that they had mistaken one of the many pots markers for a person waving.

Sunday 10th August 10.00 'Guardian' was being rigged for Patrol at Suffolk Yacht Harbour her crew were immediately requested by yachtsmmen to assist with an unconscious colleague in the West Harbour. The casualty was amongst a group of sailors who had returned from racing and had quickly become unwell. The middle aged man was given oxegen and cared for until paramedics arrived prior to be taken to A & E.

Sun 3rd August 10.36 'Volunteer' tasked by Orwell VTS to a broken down power boat in the fairway off Pin Mill. The 'Dixie' with eight persons onboard all wearing lifejackets was towed into Suffolk Yacht Harbour.

14.05 'Volunteer' tasked by Coastguard to a 'Mayday' call from yacht 'Windsong' The 35ft sloop with two persons onaboard had been dismantled off Shotley. 'Volunteer' arrived on-scene within five minutes and confirmed that there were no injuries onboard. The 'Windsong' was assisted by 'Volunteer' and the HHA Patrol Launch into Harwich. 

Sun 27th July 'Guardian' charged by Local Authorities, CAA and the Felixstowe Carnival Committee to act as 'Crash Boat' for the Felixstowe Carnival Air Display and to enforce the mandatory Pier Exclusion Zone for the evening Fire Work Display.

Sat 26th July Speeding Powerboat Incidents at Felixstowe

13.55 'Guardian' on routine patrol of the River Deben was tasked to the three 9's call from
a concerned member of the public to a report of two speed boats operating amongst swimmers in Pier Bight. 'Guardian' arrived on-scene within seven minutes and observed the two speed boats operating dangerously, well within the SCDC required 200m powered craft exclusion zone running the entire length of Felixstowe Seafront. The seven power boaters none of whom were wearing lifejackets nor using a 'kill cord' were advised accordingly.

16.00 'Guardian' on routine patrol of the River Orwell was tasked by Coastguard to a call from a member of public again concerned over another powerboat operating dangerously close to swimmers inside the exclusion zone off Spa Gardens. 'Guardian' arrived on-scene within six minutes and warned the offenders, again not using a 'Kill Cord'.


Following the tragic accident in Cornwall last year a family of six were ejected from the speeding

powerboat, two of them being killed and three others seriously injured having been run-down by their own boat due to not using a 'Kill Cord'. We are now required by MCA - Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) to record any instance we are tasked to where power boaters are not wearing 'Kill Cords.


Over the years we have seen a steady rise in power boat or PWC related incidents leaving a young girl

with serious injuries and other collisions between high speed craft, other vessels and even navigational marks, a PWC losing its rider in Harwich Harbour and running amok. 2009 was our worst on record for such incidents with some thirty high speed craft being warned and advised of local byelaws, speed limits and recreational zones. We were tasked to ten of these by either Coastguard, Police or Harbour Authorities and in most cases were required to obtain offenders details.


19-20th July 2014

Felixstowe Beach Incident 19.7.2014

'Volunteers' crew on routine patrol of Felixstowe seafront observed an unattended pile of clothes just above the rising tide mark at Landguard Common.
A crewman went ashore and moved the piles of clothes further up the beach and reported that there were male and female items including two sets of trainers, a wrist watch, mobile and diary. Fearful that we could have two missing swimmers Thames Coastguard were informed whilst a second crewman went ashore to help with enquiries. Nearby beach users were questioned and confirmed that an elderly couple had been present but were believed to have walked off. A crew member phoned a mobile phone number taken from the diary but no response was received so a visual search of the immediate areas was instigated. Nothing untoward was apparent at sea, or ashore and some time later a young couple were seen heading towards the clothes. When spoken to, they confirmed that the clothes were indeed theirs. They did not realise that the tide was rising neither did they realise and any pile of belongings left unattended on a beach could cause any concern.

Sloop requiring assistance 20.7.2014

'Volunteer' again on routine patrol of the River Orwell in heavy rain squalls was hailed by a sloop crew requesting assistance. The 35ft sloop with 5 persons and a dog onboard had suffered a total power failure and could not use her engine or sail against the strong tide. The casualty was soon taken in tow by 'Volunteer' and berthed safely back, on her own berth , in Shotley Marina.

FVCPRS Press Release 7th July 2014 'Patrol Back On Service'

The weekend of 5-6 July saw the FVCPRS return to service following the disastrous RTA last December when the rescue vehicle was written off and both the patrol lifeboat and trailer was seriously damaged leaving the service in ruins.
'Volunteer' still being under repair, patrols were commenced using its larger temporary rescue boat 'Guar...
dian' purchased by a grant from the Suffolk Police & Crime Commissioner in order to procure an ex Essex Police Boat to be used in conjunction with their own requirements. Within a few hours of returning to service 'Guardian' went to the assistance of a Dutch sloop with six persons onboard aground on the Deben Bar. 'Guardian' was requested to stand by the sloop in case of a MOB 'Man Overboard' situation by both the sloops crew and HM Coastguard, whilst the Ferry Harbour Masters refloated the sloop which was eventually towed into the Deben.
On Sunday 'Guardian' on routine patrol off Cobbolds Point was tasked by Thames Coastguard to a 33ft angling charter boat aground on the outer Cork Sand with five persons onboard who were fearful that there vessel could break up. 'Guardian' located the casualty and arrived on scene within eighteen minutes having navigated through the treacherous shoals. The casualties crew were wearing their lifejackets when a Coast Patrol Crewman was put onboard to check on their wellbeing and the vessels bilges prior to being prepared for the tow off procedure. Meanwhile the Harwich All Weather Lifeboat (RNLI) had also been tasked and arrived on scene some twenty minutes later, but was forced to stand off owing to her deep draft. A heavy 150m long tow line was taken onboard 'Guardian' from the RNLI Lifeboat and made fast to the casualty which was then safely pulled off into deep water none the worse for her ordeal. A donation was given to 'Guardians' crew which was split between the Felixstowe Coast Patrol and the RNLI.

Charimans Comment:

Being literally thrown into the 'deep end' after a lengthy period off service, and with a larger and deeper type of patrol boat is probably the best return to service that we could have had. It not only proved the worth of the service now in its eighteenth year, but also the crews training and efficiency in working a new more complicated boat and was a prime example on inter-rescue service cooperation.

John Cresswell
Chairman & 1st Coxn


Casualty Details Sunday 15th September 2013

'Volunteer' tasked to a small yacht in Gale Force 9 Conditions

16.30 'Volunteer' was Tasked by Thames Coastguard to a report from a 
vigilant member of public at Dovercourt seeing a yacht in difficulties blown ashore
and being overwhelmed by large waves in the Walton Channel.

In severe Gale Force 9 conditions with heavy seas 'Volunteer' covered the 6 mile distance to the casualty and arrived on-scene at 16.43. The 23ft sloop 'Buccaneer' 
with two person onboard not wearing life jackets and with no radio had been blown into the shallows with large waves breaking over her. 'Volunteer' herself grounded  her engines in the deep wave troughs whilst passing her tow line to the casualty which was turned 180 degrees and pulled back into deep water. The casualty was then towed back to Titchmarsh Marina where her very wet and cold crew were received by Walton Coastguard at 18.05.


Casualty / Incidents Sunday 8th September 2013

10.00 Tasked by Port of Ipswich and Suffolk Police to a Micro-light flying under the 
Orwell Bridge and in the vicinity of high voltage cables crossing the river. 10.05 

'Volunteer' away from Suffolk Yacht Harbour pending any serious incident and on-scene at 10.14 by which time the reckless Micro-light was seen flying over Freston heading West.

11.08 Tasked by Thames Coastguard to the assistance of the 30ft motor cruiser 'Tamara' with two persons on board reporting a rope round its propeller and drifting down onto shipping off the Port of Felixstowe. 11.14 'Volunteer' on-scene and 'Tamara' taken in tow for Woolverston Marina. 

15.22 Tasked by Thames Coastguard to assist a 5.6m RHIB with 4 persons on board 
reporting an engine failure and being blown onto the shoals off Bawdsey.
15.33 'Volunteer' on-scene and two young female passengers transferred onto 
'Volunteer' for their safety prior to the RHIB being towed back to Levington Marina.

Incidents 31st August / 1st September 2013

Sat 31st 17.43 'Volunteer' tasked to assist the 35ft sloop 'Sapphire' with 4 persons on board reporting an engine problem at Stratton Bight - River Orwell. 17.52 casualty located and taken in tow into Suffolk Harbour.


Sun 1st Sept 12.11 'Volunteer' tasked to assist the 28ft sloop 'Estella' with 3 persons on board reporting an engine problem at Downham Reach - River Orwell.  Mother of very young infant said that she could not assist with navigating the sloop into a very congested marina, and look after the baby. 12.13 casualty taken in tow for Fox's Marina where safely berthed at 12.20.

14.36 'Volunteer' tasked to a report by a yachtsman concerned that there were multiple swimmers being carried away by the tide and in difficulties off Clamp House - River Orwell. 14.38 'Volunteer' on-scene to find that four young girl swimmers had climbed on board a moored motor boat and were safe and well, requiring no further action. 'Volunteer' remained with the girls until they had swam back ashore to relatives. The first informant on board the sloop 'Deben Rhapsody' was then reassured that his concerns were valid and his actions correct receiving thanks from Thames Coastguard.

Other incidents handled over the weekend were apprehending and cautioning speeding powered craft, safety advice to kayakers re: strong offshore winds, searching for a missing dinghy, assisting Coastguard with a Pan-Pan incident and investigating an unidentified object off Felixstowe seafront.


Busy Day at Resort for coast Patrol Sat 17th August 2013


12.20 'Volunteer' in Harwich harbour tasked by Thames Coastguard to a report of a broken down personal watercraft (PWC) with two persons in
rough conditions off the Deben Bar. 12.25 on-scene and two casualties taken on board 'Volunteer' and PWC safely towed into Felixstowe Ferry.

14.32 'Volunteer' on patrol in the River Orwell tasked by Thames Coastguard to a PWC being used recklessly at Felixstowe Ferry. 14.50 Arrived at Felixstowe Ferry to immediately be re-tasked by Coastguard to a report via a 999 call of a lone windsurfer in difficulties off the Deben Bar. 14.50 'Volunteer' on-scene with windsurfer clinging to board but confirming that he was only tired and was happy to make his own way ashore.

14.47 'Volunteer' back at Felixstowe Ferry to apprehend 'nuisance' PWC and warn bye laws and Recreational Zones suitable for high speed operation.

15.50 'Volunteer' on routine patrol of seafront hailed by a group of windsurfers at Manor End advising that one of the group had sailed off and had now been missing for over an hour, 'Volunteer' advised TH Coastguard accordingly and a full scale search was instigated involving 'Volunteer', Rescue Helicopter 'Seaking 125, and two Harwich Lifeboats. Meanwhile 'Volunteer' was tasked to commence a search pattern at the Wadgate Ledge.

16.15 All rescue units 'stood down' as the 60 year old experienced windsurfer had been located ashore at Cobbolds Point safe and well, after being unable to make his way back to Manor end in the Gale force winds.

                              River Orwell Incidents - Sunday 28th July 2013


10.17. Levington. 'Volunteer' had only just logged on duty with Coastguard when she was called to assist the 27ft sloop 'Twizzle' with two

crew and who had fouled her rudder on a mooring and was held fast. 'Volunteers' crew were soon able to free the stranded yacht without any damage.

14.47. Downham. Reach. Alerted by an observant yachtsman to a capsized 16ft 'Wayfarer' sailing with two persons in the water and unable to right the waterlogged dinghy that had been blown ashore. 'Volunteer' arrived on-scene within two minutes and gave the very wet casualties a medical check and helped to bail out the dinghy before towing it back to Woolverstone.

15.58. Freston. Called by the large sloop 'Redcat' passing Pin Mill and reporting a person seen failing overboard from a small drifting cabin yacht. 'Volunteers' arrived on-scene within four minutes by which time the elderly man had been pulled from the water by two nearby fishermen. The casualty was given a medical check and insisted that he could sail back unaided whilst 'Volunteer' stood by. Some moments later the man was seen to be in difficulties again and quickly taken in tow back to his mooring at Pin Mill where he was found to be suffering from mild hypothermia and shock, but again declined any further assistance.


Note: Although the casualty was wearing a gas inflated lifejacket,  it had failed to automatically inflate. If it had not been for the intervention of several different parties during these two incidents the outcomes could have been very different. I would personally like to thank these observant people for their quick actions which were in the highest traditions of seafaring.


John Cresswell

Chairman / 1st Coxn


Over Sat & Sun 6th & 7th July 13 'Volunteers' crew apprehended or warned seven speeding craft or PWC in the Rivers Orwell and Deben. 

Saturday 6th July 2013 10.20 Damage to River Orwell No 3 Buoy reported to the Orwell Navigation Service.

11.40 River Orwell In pursuit of speeding powerboat at 25 kts in the 6knt area.

Apprehended and warned that he may be reported as the offender had been warned on a previous occasion.

12.00 River Orwell In pursuit of an angling boat at 20 kts, aprrehended and warned.

12.15 River Orwell In pursuit of an RHIB at 23 kts as owner ignored our request to slow down. Apprehended and warned that CCTV was in operation covering the River.

12.48 Requested by Harwich VTS to talk to a large Brixham trawler in the main channel that had crossed in front of a large commercial vessel causing some concern. 

12.50 Hailed by beach users at Manor End Felixstowe reporting the decaying carcass of an adult Harbour Porpoise. This was measured and photographed for Coastguard before being towed out some mile offshore.

13.44 Tasked by Coastguard to a power craft aground on the Deben Bar

14.25 Stood down as craft had managed to refloat itself

15.08 River Orwell Apprehended and warned spedding angling boat 

17.05 Observed a 'Campion' type power boat hard aground at Stratton Bight. Unable to tow off as engine lef was deep in mud so the six-crew were given a welfare check and Coastguard advised.

Sunday 7th July 2013

10.06 River Orwell Apprehended and warned two speeding power boats

12.36 River Orwell Apprehended and warned angling boat

13.26 Deben Bar 'Volunteer' tasked by Coastguard to a 34ft sloop with an engine seizure in the River Orwell 

13.33 On-scene and sloop 'Aqua Dance' with two onboard, on passage to Brightlingsea was towed into Levington Marina.

17.11 'Volunteer' tasked by Coastguard to the 40ft motor cruiser 'Panther' hard aground on the Deben Bar with four adults and four children onboard.

17.20 'Volunteer' on-scene in very shallow water with no hope of re-floating the large cruiser. The 'Panthers' own kedge anchor was deployed by 'Volunteer' who remained alongside for safety until 19.17 when the motor cruiser was towed into deep water and safely piloted out to sea after her bilges were checked.


Harwich Harbour Incident Saturday 29th July 2013


'Volunteer' on routine patrol accompanying the Barge Match and abeam of the 'Grisle' at 09.09 observed

a module of three 40'ft shipping containers fall overboard and into the harbour from the port quarter of MSC

VANDYA berthed at the Landguard Terminal.


Assuming that there maybe persons in the water 'Volunteer' was put to full ahead and arrived on scene

within one minute and was able to confirm that there was neither persons in the water or any casualties.


The module of floating containers still locked together were being carried out SW towards the fairway by the strong

spring ebb tide. Harwich VTS were immediately informed of the situation and that 'Volunteer' had a line on the module

which was being pushed back towards the quay as a large passenger ferry was seen underway outward bound at the Navyard.


The module was kept pinned to the quay by 'Volunteer' until the arrival of port operatives and the tugs 'Intrepid' and 'Shotley' who then took over.


Although already aware of the incident THCG were passed further details and 'Volunteers' onboard camera captured the procedure.


Sunday 30th June 2013


10.10 'Volunteer' tasked by TH Coastguard to the 33ft sloop 'Wavelength' with 2 persons onboard reporting a fouled propeller off Bathside Bay - River Stour


10.23 'Volunteer' alongside casualty who requested to be towed into Shotley Mariner to be lifted out of the water, the owner fearing that his propeller was damaged.


15.28 'Volunteer' tasked by TH Coastguard to a report made by FXT Coastguard concerning an inflatable swim ring observed offshore at Felixstowe seafront.


15.31 'Volunteer' commenced a thorough search of the drift area in fear that the child owner could possibly still be in the water. Fortunately nothing untoward was found and ring blown ashore near to the pier.


This was the first seafront incident this year probably because of the days excellent weather and the resorts beaches being well used for the first time this season.




Sunday 9th June 2013


The occupants of a sailing dinghy swam to shore after they capsized in Woodbridge.


A Sea King helicopter, which had been on a training sortie from RAF Wattisham, together with Coastguard crews from Felixstowe and Shingle Street were sent to search the River Deben after the empty boat was spotted on its side by a member of the public.


A spokeswoman for Walton Coastguard said search was called off at about 2.50pm after the occupants called police to say they had abandoned the boat and had swam to shore close to the Sutton Hoo visitor Centre.


The crew of the craft 'Lazy Kipper' 'had reported seeing the capsized Enterprise type sailing dinghy and

two lifejackets, but no occupants nearby.

A full scale search was initiated by Thames Coastguard and 'Volunteer' refuelling at Levington Marina was tasked

at 14.24. She covered the distance of 15 miles to Woodbridge in 28 minutes even though she encountered rough seas

from Harwich to the River Deben. 'Volunteer' was stood down at 15.54 after the dinghies crew had been accounted for.



Saturday 25th May 2013


Sat 25th 12.20 'Volunteer' received a radio message from the 38ft sloop 'Greenbelt' with two crew on passage from Harwich to West Mersey. The 'Greenbelt' had suffered a major engine problem off the 'Medusa Buoy' and decided to return to Harwich. 'Volunteer' took the sloop in tow bound for Levington Marina.


15.45 The 35ft sloop 'Stephanie Louise' in Hamford Water reported taking on water. Thames Coastguard monitored the sloops progress until she reported to be making for the Orwell. Radio contact with the sloop was then lost and 'Volunteer' was then tasked to locate and assist the casualty, her whereabouts now not known. A search was made of Harwich Harbour and the Orwell Lower Reaches in which time 'Volunteer' assisted another 38ft sloop aground on falling tide off Shotley. The 'Stephanie Louise' was located off Landguard, taken in tow with 'Volunteers' crew assisting to pump the casualty out. She was eventually safely berthed at Levington Marina at 18.35 where her bilges were confirmed as dry.


Sunday 26th May 2013

14.02 'Volunteer' was tasked by Thames Coastguard to a report by a concerned yachtsman sailing in Holbrook Bay. The sloop 'Summerwind' reported an inflatable dinghy with one person onboard with a broken down engine being swept downriver by the strong ebb-tide leaving another adult and young child stranded onboard the 28ft sloop 'Murumi'. 'Volunteer' was on-scene within twelve minutes and the child and two adults and broken down dinghy were safely put ashore at Harkstead.




Saturday 4th May - At 16.10 'Volunteer' already attending a minor incident in the River Orwell was tasked by Thames Coastguard to a 'Mayday' incident at Orfordness

The 32ft sloop 'Dawn Walk' with a crew of three had reported being blown ashore onto the beach south of Orfordness Lighthouse and the sloop was now being swamped by heavy seas and was in danger of breaking up. The sloops crew had safely managed to get ashore and were assisted by Coastguards. 'Volunteer' covered the distance of 15 miles to the casualty in 27 minutes in rough seas and a hail storm and stood by whilst the Aldeburgh lifeboat managed to refloat the damaged sloop.

Monday 6th May - 11.42 'Volunteer' on routine patrol in the River Orwell was tasked to assist the 40ft sloop 'Prudence' with 2 crew and who had reported having an engine problem in the the River Deben. The sloop was towed into the Orwell and 'Volunteer' was then tasked to take her into Levington Marina.

14.57 'Volunteer' returning from a patrol off Felixstowe seafront was tasked to assist the 37ft sloop 'Suffolk Legend' also with 2 crew and reporting an engine problem. The sloop was safely taken into Levington Marina.

Saturday 8th September 2012

13.47 Received call direct from 37ft Sloop 'Mazza 2' - 2 POB sailing in the Stour off

Parkeston reporting an electrical power failure and unable to start engine. Requesting assistance into SYH but presently able to sail into the Orwell. Advised that 'Volunteer' was committed to a Charity Event (Two Rivers Canoe Challenge) but would assist ASAP. Arrangements made to RV with 'Mazza 2' when sloop was at Fagbury Pt. 14.28 Casualty under tow into SYH where safely berthed at 15.10

Type. 37ft Ocean Sloop, SSR 146962, out of SYH

Sunday 9th September 2012


15.08 Pos, River Deben - The Tipps. Tasked by THCG to a report by a concerned MOP reporting a powerboat operating at speed, towing a 'doughnut' amongst swimmers, one reported as being narrowly missed, South of Felixstowe Pier. (Incident filmed by 1st Informant).

15.20 The Knolls. 'Volunteer' called by 35ft Sloop 'Schimitar' reporting his tender broken adrift , recovered and returned to sloop underway off Deben Bar.

15.35 'Volunteer' on-scene at Felixstowe Pier, no powerboats in near vicinity. Assumed powerboat seen heading round Landguard Pt - confirmed by Felixstowe National Coastwatch Institution (NCI). In pursuit of powerboat underway through Harwich Harbour at 37 Kts.

15.50 20ft 'Campion' type craft capable of 60 Kts was apprehended off Fagbury Buoy, four male crew unaware of the dangers caused, speed restrictions or Byelaws. All advised accordingly and further advised of possible consequences if stopped again. A very cordial response received.

Note: The two day 'Estuaries Canoeing for Cancer Challenge' went very well without drama, although it would seem that the organisers failed to advise all parties. You maybe interested to learn that during our pre-event safety briefing, not one of the 13 competitors experienced or novice were aware of the International Distress Signal for Paddlers.



Bank Holiday Monday 27th August 2012

12:20 Beach End - Tasked by Thames Coastguard to a sloop reported aground at the Orwell Bridge. 12:40 arrived on-scene to find the 18ft classic sloop 'Normandy' with 1 person onboard had suffered an engine failure and been blown ashore directly under the Bridge between the West Pier and river bank. A kedge anchor was run out by the 'Volunteers' crew and the owner advised that they would return to assist with refloating estimated at about 18:00.

16:55 'Volunteer' returned to the bridge and stood by the 'Normandy' until 18:27 when she was pulled off into deep water where her bilges were checked prior to her being towed back to her morring at Pin Mill.


During the above incident at 12:55 'Volunteers' crew were approached ashore by two distraught people, one female and one male who reported that they had canoed up river from Woolverston. Left their inflatable canoe, paddles and lifejackets ashore near the Orwell Bridge whilst they went for a coffee at the Suffolk Food Hall - Wherstead. But on their return found that the canoe and its equipment were missing. Suffolk Police were immediately contacted and our enquiries revealed that a group of nearby fishermen had seen the canoe being loaded into a vehicle, but they assumed they were the owners so took no action. The two people were taken onboard 'Volunteer' and taken back to their vehicle at Woolverstone. (Suffolk Police Incident Number 2302708/2012)



 Saturday 11th August 2012


13:51 Tasked by Thames Coastguard to a report of a lone PWC being used recklessly off Felixstowe Beach.

4:50 Tasked by Harbour Master to assist a 20ft 'Campion' powerboat with engines problems at Stratton (4 POB).  Taken in tow back to Woolverstone Marina.

16:25 Received a call from the sloop 'Minella' reporting an engine failure and presently inward bound off Pye End. 


The sloop with 2 POB sailed into Harwich Harbour where is was taken in tow by 'Volunteer' and banked at SYH.



Sunday 5th August 2012

09:23 Tasked to investigate a report of a yacht agroun west of Pye End Buoy. Lat/Long 51 52 122 N / 001 17 343 E.

09:34 Yacht located and 'Volunteer' on scene to find 35ft sloop 'Allegria of Wight' with 3 POB now afloat. Crew confirmed that they had been aground all night and had suffered no grounding damage. The Sloop was originally bound from Woolverstone (Home Port) to Brightlingsea prior to grounding. Advised to call Thames Coastguard when underway on passage to Brightlingsea.

12:00 Call from Thames Coastguard advising liason with Harwich VTS. Tasked to locate and apprehend 3 PWC users behaving recklessly in vicinity of South Shelf Buoy. 12:15 'Volunteer' On-scene nothing found, advised by VTS that PWC were heading north and Harbour Patrol could not match their speed. Requested to locate and advise accordingly. 12:39 Three PWC located at Felixstowe Ferry and advised of relevant bye-laws in force for area and designated recreational zones. 13:07 Thames Coastguard & Harwich VTS Sitreps.

Dangerous & Anti-Social Behaviour Incident



Above picture was taken 5th August 2012 RIver Orwell showing 'Volunteer' alongside the two RIBS that were stopped for speeding in the River Orwell.

13:38 River Orwell - Fagbury Buoy. Observed distant wash from two high speed craft presently off Collimer Pt, heading north. 'Volunteer' in pursuit at one and a half miles astern. Both craft passed at speeds estimated at 21-25 kts (28.41 mph) through the 'East Sailability' fleet off No 4 Buoy and still at speed passed through the moorings at Pin Mill and a fleet of Topper dinghies at Woolverstone.

14:04 Apprehended both crafts - RHIBS south of the Mulberry Buoy in position 52 00 588 N 001 116 67 E (1) 7m Grey Sponsons / white cuddy / A-frame, 2 POB. (2) 5.85m Blue sponsons / white console / A frame, 2 POB.

When Approached both crews refused to identify themselves or recognise our authority as bestoed on the FVCPRS by all relevant Agencies, but did admit to breaking the speed limit. When advised of the speed restrictions and bye-laws an elderly male onboard 'RIBQUEST' immediately became extremely abusive and aggresive. At this stage both Thames Coastguard and the ONS were informed and requested to contact Suffolk Police for possible intervention when both RHIBS eventually landed. (POLICE INCIDENT No 240). We did not use our direct Police onboard comms as we wanted our conversations officially logged with the relevant Agencies.

More detailed reports will be forwarded to relevant Agencies for consideration ASAP.



Casualty Incidents 28th & 29th July 2012

Saturday 28th July. 09:40 'Volunteer' received a report via SYH Harbour Master reporting that a 43ft Sloop 'Arian' with 6 POB on passage to Southwold had an engine failiure and was reluctant to attempt to enter Southwold HArbour without power.

The sloop was presently sailing back into Harwich but making slow progress against the ebb tide and was requesting assistance. 'Volunteer' located the casualty off Shotley, advised Thames Coastguard and had her under tow by 10:05 bound for SYH. The 'Arian' was safely alongside in the Marina by 10:54.

13:19 Monitored Thames Coastguard calling a vessel aground on Harwich Shelf. No reply received back from casualty. 'Volunteer' then on patrol in the River Deben was tasked by Thames Coastguard to proceed and assist. 13:32 ' Volunteer' on-scene to find the 35ft motor vessel 'Eleven Star' hard aground. The owner did not require any assistance and was happy to refloat later on the flood tide.

Sunday 29th July 14:22 'Volunteer' refuelling at SYH. Current position requested by Thames Coastguard Re: a vessel reported aground on the Deben Bar with another yacht standing-by. 14:29 'Volunteer' underway bound for the Deben Bar 14:40 'Volunteer' on-scene to find that the casualty had refloated herlef without assistance.

16:01 'Volunteer' on patrol in the River Orwell sighted smoke on the shoreline north of Levington Creek blowing towards (Home Wood-Pollys Cottage). Three youths were seen attempting to set fire to a rotting tree in the near vicinity of a nearby wheat field. Owing to the shallows 'Volunteers' crew stood off and deployed the Blue's & Two's siren which caused the youths to run off towards Levington Village. The Police were informed and 'Volunteer' remained on-scene until the fire had extinguished itself as the area was inaccessible to the emergency services.



Casualty Incidents 14th & 15th July 2012

 Saturday 14th July 15:30 'Volunteer' on routine patrol of the River Deben observed a 30ft classic wooden Sloop hard aground at Sea Reach. The Lady Mary of Woodbridge' was deep keeled and lying over careened on her starboard beam ends with a serious list of 50 degrees.

Owing to the still falling tide no attempt could be made to refloat her so a kedge anchor was laid out into deep water. It was estimated that the Baltic sterned sloop with two people on-board would not refloat until 20:00 and may then still be in grave danger of swamping owing to her severe list.

'Volunteers' crew promised to return at 19:00 to assist with the re-floating and resumed patrol into the River Orwell.

However, at 17:45 'Volunteer' was tasked by Coastguard back to the 'Lady Mary' as she was reporting taking water on-board, and the sloop was not righting herself putting her in imminent danger.

'Volunteer' arrived back on-scene within 15 minutes and immediately lashed herself to the sloops low side providing extra buoyancy.

By 18:45 the 'Lady Mary' had started to lift and come back on an even-keel thwarting any further danger, however it was not until 20:30 that 'Volunteer' was able to pull the sloop back into deep water. She was then taken back to Ramsholt where her bilges were sounded and confirmed dry.

Sunday 15th July 14:10 'Volunteer' refueling at Suffolk Yacht Harbour received a report of a yacht aground at Fagbury Point-River Orwell. 'Volunteer' arrived on-scene at 14:13 to find the 28ft Gaff rigged sloop 'Garnet' with one person on board and engine failure, aground on a falling tide. 'Volunteer' was able to close in and attach her tow line and pull the sloop off into the fairway, where her bilges were sounded before being towed into Suffolk Yacht Harbour.




Casualty Incidents 30th June 2012 / 1st July 2012

Saturday 14:57 'Volunteer' on routine patrol off the River Orwell went to the assistance of the 31ft Sloop 'Mystigue' with 2 persons onboard and hard aground off Levington. Because of a falling tide it was impossible to refloat the Sloop until 17:00 when it was then discovered that she had an engine problem. The 'Mystigue' was then taken in tow back to Woolverstone.

Sunday 16:33 'Volunteer' was called to assist the 35ft Sloop 'Blue Magic' with 2 persons onboard reporting an engine failure following a fire in Harwich Harbour. The Sloops crew had successfully extinguished the fire, but with no engine and strong winds were unable to safely enter Levington Marina without assistance.




Casualty Incident 5th June 2012

11:05 Tasked by Orwell VTS to a 35ft slopp reporting a steering failiure outward bound at the E Fenn Buoy.

11:10 Sloop 'The Pearl', 6 POB taken in tow into the Ipswich Haven Marina where safely berthed at 11:30

15:22 Tasked by SYH Harbour Master to the 36ft classic type sloop 'Venya', 2 POB on passage from the Thames Pageant to Aldeburgh reporting an engine failure and requesting a berth at SYH for repairs.

15:30 Alongside 'Venya' off Shotley Spit and tow made fast. 16:00 arrived SYH and all fast on visitors berth.




Casualty Incidents 27th May 2012

15:26 'Volunteer' on routine patrol of Felixstowe seafront observed two teenage males onboard a two-man canoe off the end of Felixstowe Pier some 250m offshore. Neither were wearing any buoyancy aids and were clad only in shorts and tee-shirts. They were warned of the dangers of not having any buoyancy aids, their life expectancy in the still cold water and were strongly advised to paddle back to shore. 'Volunteer' resumed patrol, but only mintes later noticed that the boy's canoe had capsized and they were clinging to the upturned hull. 'Volunteer' quickly returned just as the swamped canoe sunk leaving the boy's endeavouring to swim ashore with only one of them being a competent swimmer. Both were hauled onboard 'Volunteer' and returned safely ashore at 15:44

17:10 'Volunteer' on the days final patrol of the River Orwell was hailed by the crew of the 35ft UFO Type Sloop 'Zappa' with two people and a dog onboard. They reported having a total power failure with no radio and required assistance.

The 'Zappa' was taken under tow to Suffolk Yacht Harbour where she was safely berthed at 17:40.

 Casualty Incidents 20th May 2012

Deben Bar 12.40HRS  

Lone 20 year old female Kite surfer seperated from board and feet caught up in control lines. Taken aboad 'Volunteer' - Lines cut from feet, kite recovered and safely taken ashore . The young lady was being blown offshore by strong offshore winds. 

  Deben Bar 14.15 HRS

19 Ft Sloop 'Alice 3', 2 POB unable to sail against strong spring tide. Engine had broken down and craft was in danger of being grounded. Towed back to mooring at Felixstowe Ferry.