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The Royal National Lifeboat Institution - Saves Lives at Sea



Kinghorn RNLI Lifeboat crew were called from their beds at 03.35am on Thursday morning after a fishing boat broke down three miles north of Aberlady Bay, East Lothian.

The 32’ trawler, Fortune II, was fishing in the Firth of Forth when it suffered engine failure. The skipper called Forth Coastguard who immediately requested the launch of Kinghorn Lifeboat to offer assistance. There was person onboard the vessel.

Kinghorn Lifeboat launched at 03.55am and arrived on scene some 30 minutes later. The Fortune II was taken in tow back to Port Seton where the vessel was currently based. It is understood its homeport was South Shields.

Helmsman Scott McIllravie said, “We located the casualty vessel drifting about 2 miles east of the Fairway buoy. Unfortunately the radio on the fishing boat had failed during the incident which made it difficult to communicate.

“The weather on scene was good, with a Force 2/3 westerly wind and only a slight sea.

“We took the vessel under tow back to Port Seton which was approximately 5.5 miles away. Our Atlantic 85 lifeboat performed very well and handled the larger vessel with ease.

“When we arrived at Port Seton there still wasn’t enough water so we handed the tow to a local fishing boat, the Emma Jane who was going to wait until the tide came in enough to enter the harbour.

Scott added, “However, the Fortune II skipper was very happy that we had managed to tow him back to safety and he gave the crew a basket of prawns for their troubles, this was much appreciated by us all.”

The volunteer lifeboat crew then returned to Kinghorn at 05.55am to wash and fuel the lifeboat before heading off to their respective workplaces.

The crew on this shout were Scott McIllravie, Leanne Fisher, Steven Wallace and Melanie McGarva. The lifeboat was launched by tractor driver Steve Brown.