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Yacht deploys life raft by accident in windy conditions in the Solent

Picture credited to Nick Edwards/Cowes RNLI

The RNLI Lifeboat team in Cowes had to be called out after a yacht accidentally deployed its life raft in the Solent.

The crew from the Isle of Wight station rushed to the vessel at around 6pm last night (Friday 26th April) in windy conditions.

When they arrived at the scene they found the raft container had broken free.

The raft was recovered and the yacht, which was based in Southampton, was able to continue on its journey.

You can take a look at pictures of what happened below.

(Above: Pictures from the incident - credited to Nick Edwards/Cowes RNLI)

The Cowes RNLI team released the following statement last night on what happened:

"Cowes Lifeboat assisted a 40ft yacht just west of Cowes this evening. A strong wind against a strong ebbing tide creates steep, confused seas.

"This yacht’s liferaft deployed itself and acted as a sea anchor hindering the yacht’s progress and turning it beam on (sideways) to the sea. An uncomfortable position to be in.

"The lifeboat helm and yacht skipper agreed best policy was to cut the liferaft adrift for the Lifeboat to recover and the yacht continued on its way west which allowed Cowes Lifeboat to bring the (now deflated) raft - knives are handy on boats! - ashore at the station.

"As the lifeboat returned to station she was asked to standby by to possibly assist another yacht, our services were not needed and we recovered."

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