A fisherman who got caught up in whelk-pots and fell overboard “narrowly escaped with his life” yesterday afternoon.
And it was only thanks to the crew of a nearby trawler, who came to his aid and called the coastguard, that he was saved.
The fisherman was on a single-handed fishing boat when he went overboard, without his lifejacket on, three nautical miles south of Brighton Marina. He was dragged behind the boat by a rope.
The other crew spotted him and managed to get him onto the trawler deck. They then sent an urgent VHF Radio broadcast to HM Coastguard just before 1pm.
HM Coastguard sent Brighton Lifeboat Station (RNLI) to assist and they brought the fisherman back to the marina to meet a waiting ambulance.
A spokesperson for HM Coastguard said: “This fisherman is incredibly lucky. He was lucky that it was a good day and he had another vessel following close behind him that saw him in trouble.
“A lot of the time we see the tragic, raw end working with the fishing community, especially when fishermen don’t wear lifejackets. He’s had a lucky escape, not having a lifejacket, to stay above water for even this short period of time.
“The lucky part is that he didn’t get hurt as he fell overboard. If he had hit his head, the outcome might not have been the same.
“Thankfully, in this instance, he had tied a rope around his waist to his vessel whilst trying to unsnag his pots – it’s this action which ultimately helped him stay nearby his vessel when he went overboard.
“We take this opportunity to urge all fishermen to wear a lifejacket whenever they go out on the water. Wearing a lifejacket with a Personal Locator Beacon (PLB) attached to it means we have your exact location if you get into distress.”
LIKE WHAT WE DO? HELP US TO DO MORE OF IT BY DONATING HERE.