08 May 2011
Berwick lifeboat crew rescued two local fishermen after their fishing boat capsized, leaving them clinging to the side of their upturned vessel for 90 minutes before the alarm was raised.
The Jas N was hit by a freak wave his week and overturned 1 mile north of Berwick Pier. The two men were hanging onto the overturned fishing boat for an hour and a half before being spotted by a member of the public, who raised the alarm.
Both Berwick lifeboats were launched and preceded to the area where the boat had been spotted. On arrival they spotted the two fishermen hanging on to the upturned boat.
Robert Frost, Coxswain of the all-weather lifeboat said: ‘They were glad to see the lifeboat heading towards them and were very lucky that they had been spotted from the shore; they were both cold and wet.’
The lifeboat crew managed to get the two fishermen aboard the lifeboat and examined them for hypothermia, both were found to be well. The upturned fishing boat was then made safe with buoys and towed back to Tweed Dock, where it was lifted out of the water by a waiting crane.
Berwick Lifeboat Operations Manager, Tom Wakenshaw, said: “This is a prime example of how the sea can be so unpredictable and even catch out the more experienced amongst us, you never know when a freak wave will hit you even on a relatively calm day, so when going to sea be prepared and carry the correct safety equipment.”
So here are these two fishermen, who were unlucky to be encountered a freaque wave, but they were very lucky to have been spotted from the shore quickly and rescue effort was immediately launched. It is always gratifying to read a successful story and everyone is happily ever after, but danger is out there all the time. I am particularly impressed by the comment of Mr. Wakenshaw, Manager of the Berwick Lifeboat Operations. It is a sound advise indeed as I put special emphasize on the above comment so that every mariner should be mindful of it at all times!