Crew rescued just in time from burning boat

Photography student Will Stanley took this picture which appeared in local paper ’The Argus’
.. .
In a nightmare scenario that all sailors dread, two crew have been rescued this week from a yacht, Toucan Tango, which caught fire and sank.

The UK's Solent Coastguard received a call from the boat, which luckily was only about half a mile off the west arm of Brighton Marina, shortly before 7.30am.


Brighton lifeboat crew rescued the people from the seven-metre yacht. They were forced to abandon the boat and jump into the water. The fire took hold so quickly that by the time the two crew were alerted they didn't even have time to dress. After calling for help they had time only to don life jackets and jump overboard. The pair were treated by waiting paramedics and then taken to Royal Sussex County Hospital.

They were suffering from the cold but were uninjured.

The boat, called Toucan Tango, was allowed to burn and eventually sank at about 9.30am.

East Sussex Fire and Rescue received dozens of calls from concerned passers-by. Had the yacht been out to sea the outcome could have been different.

An RNLI spokesman said quick thinking by the two sailors, fire crews and the coastguard had 'averted tragedy'.

Speaking after the event, one of the two crew commented, 'We both had life jackets and my mate was in his underwear. I had jeans and a tshirt on... but luckily we are both fine, just a shame that we lost all our most needed items.. and my friend's dad's boat.'

No reason has been given for the fire, but it is a 'heads-up' once again for the caution that is necessary on board a yacht about any situation - from electrical to cooking gas - that could be the cause of a fire.