May Day Mayday rescue

Onlookers watch the drama unfold as two vessels, coordinated with the assistance of a Coastguard vehicle on the shore, tow an ailing creeler away from the rocky coast. Photograph: Peter Young

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Passengers aboard the MV Isle of Arran took a slight detour on Tuesday, the first day of May, when the ferry was diverted to assist with a Mayday call from a small creeler which was in distress near Seamill.

Launching its on-board fast rescue craft, the rib rescued the creeling vessel whose propeller had become fouled and was drifting dangerously close to the rocky coast. The fast rescue craft secured a rope to the ailing vessel and towed it into deeper water until a lifeboat arrived on the scene.

Shortly after 8.30am the Troon RNLI lifeboat Jim Moffat arrived with the Ardrossan Coastguard Rescue Team and took over the towline and towed the vessel into Clyde Marina where it was berthed with the assistance of the coastguard team. The combined efforts of the two rescue agencies and the fast rescue craft ensured that a potentially serious situation was averted.

Hours after the rescue both Troon lifeboats responded to a second callout to attend to a boat requiring assistance between Troon and Arran. However, a closer vessel was able to provide assistance and both lifeboats were stood down.

Saving the day, the MV Isle of Arran’s fast rescue craft is launched to provide assistance to a vessel in distress. Photograph: Peter Young