News / Coastguard called to vessel in distress

Aith lifeboat approaching the fishing vessel Starlight Rays, around 35 miles northeast of Unst - Photo: Aith Lifeboat

THE SUMBURGH based Coastguard helicopter and the Aith lifeboat where tasked on Saturday afternoon to assist a Norwegian fishing vessel that was in danger of sinking.

The Starlight Rays with seven crew on board was 40 miles northeast of Unst when her skipper reported that the 24-metre vessel was taking in water.

Shetland Coastguard immediately relayed MayDay calls asking vessels in the vicinity to assist.

However, by the time the search and rescue helicopter 900 arrived at the scene the crew of the Starlight Rays had managed to stop the ingress of water and was in the process of arranging a tow with its partner vessel Kjelsvik.

Once this was established the Coastguard chopper was released, and returned to base.

Meanwhile Aith lifeboat continues to make its way to the scene.

A Coastguard spokeswoman said this was to allow the lifeboat’s mechanic to check whether the ingress of water had been stopped properly.

She added that it was not yet known whether the tow would be heading to Shetland or Peterhead.

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