Rescued four times in 12 days

A yachtsman who was rescued four times in the last twelve days, who asked the Coastguard what the different colours on his charts meant, has been told his boat is a death-trap.

The 55-year old Irish skipper was guided back to Holyhead harbour on Saturday evening after a series of breakdowns in his 22-foot Pandora called Pippa.

Rescuers believe he was trying to make the sixty-mile crossing to the Isle of Man but found the yacht had part of the rudder missing, no life-jackets, no VHF radio, a flare “in pieces” and a child’s dinghy doubling as a liferaft and tender.

The spokesman for Holyhead RNLI, Ray Steadman, said the skipper could not read his charts and had ran into difficulty within sight of the coastguard station in Holyhead.

“He was asking the crew what the different colours on the charts meant and a crew member explained that the white shading meant deep water,” said Mr Steadman.

“It turned out that this guy had been rescued four times in 12 days, twice by Portdinllaen lifeboat, Abersoch and the sea king from RAF Valley was also involved in the search.

“We had to take one of the flares off him because it was in such a dangerous condition that it was in pieces and it was taken to the coastguard station for safe disposal

“He has only got half a rudder with something like six to nine inches of it in the water, he has no lifejackets and he’s using a child’s dinghy to get to and from the shore.

“The coastguard have said the craft is not safe but it can’t be impounded because it’s not a commercial vessel,” he said.

The yacht was last seen tied up longside the Mackenzie Pier in Holyhead harbour.