Late in the afternoon of Tuesday 30 January HM Coastguard Falmouth requested the assistance of Sennen Cove Lifeboat Station, following reports that the Newlyn crabber Harriet Eve had suffered engine failure and loss of electrical power. She was under tow by her company boat Chris Tacha, about two and a half miles off Longships. As the conditions were poor and darkness was approaching, it was felt prudent to seek help from the lifeboat. The RNLI all weather lifeboat City of London III launched at 5.00 pm, initially to shadow the tow on its journey to Newlyn. However the decision to ask for help from the lifeboat proved to be wise, since the tow parted just southwest of the Runnelstone. The City of London III quickly took the Harriet Eve in tow and continued towards Newlyn. It was arranged that the Penlee lifeboat Ivan Ellen should meet with them off Mousehole to continue the shadowing in case of further mishap, and assist in the berthing of the crabber at the harbour. The crabber was safely berthed at around 7.30 pm. The City of London III returned to Sennen Cove and was recovered up the slipway at 8.45 pm.
Sometimes it is necessary for HM Coastguard Falmouth to request a lifeboat to launch on service even though the location of the casualty is unclear. Such a situation arose last July. A distress beacon had been activated and it was thought the position was about 60 miles northwest from Sennen Cove. The City of London III launched to investigate and the Coastguard Rescue helicopter was tasked to try and locate the casualty. The yacht had a leak and was taking on water. With an updated position, it was realised that the vessel was nearer 80 miles northwest of Sennen Cove. Help was quickly sent out from Ireland, but the Sennen Cove crew were asked to continue on passage until it was confirmed that the Irish lifeboat and helicopter had succeeded in getting the situation under control. Eventually, the Sennen Cove crew were stood down and could head for home. Once back at the station at about 2.00 pm, the City of London III had completed a round trip of 130 miles. As far as we can ascertain this was the furthest distance a Sennen Cove lifeboat has ever travelled on service.
The Lifeboat Shop will open its doors on Saturday 17 March for the season. Anyone who would like to spare a few hours to work in the shop please get in touch with the Shop Manager, Jenny Baxter on (01736) 871916. You will find it is an interesting way to support the work of our RNLI volunteer lifeboat crew.