Kyle RNLI called to assist research vessel on Loch Duich

The Kyle RNLI team were called to assist a research vessel in difficulty on Loch Duich last weekend.

At 4.43pm on Saturday the volunteer team were alerted to help the Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Trust’s RV ‘Silurian’ in the Ratagan area of Loch Duich. The 54 foot ketch was dragging its anchor and the three man crew could not get the engine started.

On arriving on the scene at 5.10pm, the RNLI team found the RV ‘Silurian’ close to grounding at Ratagan and put a crew member aboard to assess the situation before a tow was established and the boat moved into deeper water.

Kyle RNLI - RV Silurian

The lifeboat escorted the RV ‘Silurian’ back to Kyle after power had been restored. Photo: Kyle RNLI

Once in a safer location the lifeboat crew member on board the ketch inspected the engine and managed to make a temporary repair which enabled the vessel’s engine to be started. The lifeboat then released the tow and escorted the RV ‘Silurian’ back to the pontoons at Kyle, where the engine could be fully inspected and repaired.

The lifeboat returned to station at 7.15pm and was refuelled and made ready for service.

Speaking of the incident, one of the crew said: “Luckily one of our volunteers who responded to the pager and was on the crew for this callout was the lifeboat mechanic and he was able to make a temporary repair to the vessels engine. The location and size of the vessel along with the changeable, squally weather conditions closer to Kyle meant that it would have been a tricky tow back if the engines could not have been started.”

A video from Saturday’s launch can be viewed below.