News release


The RNLI is the charity that saves lives at sea

Date: 31/05/2009

Rye Harbour 006 2009


24 foot Yacht on fire on the River Rother

Rye Harbour RNLI Lifeboat B727 'Commander and Mrs Rodney Wells' launched on Sunday 24 May 2009 at 10.26 am to the aid of yacht 'Sanctuary' which appeared to be on fire whilst afloat on the River Rother at Rye. Lifeboat B727 arrived alongside the casualty at 10.35 am and a crewman went aboard 'Sanctuary' to assess the situation and to ensure that there were no injuries. It turned out that there was not a fire but a leak in the exhaust pipe which was filling the boat with exhaust fumes. The boat was towed back to its moorings at Rock Channel, Rye.

Lifeboat B727 departed the casualty at 11.05 am and arrived back at station at 11.20 am. The lifeboat was ready for service at 11.30 am after being washed down, along with the tractor and all the kit.

Richard Tollett, RNLI Operations Manager for Rye Harbour RNLI Lifeboat, said: ‘Potentially this was a very dangerous incident. Over half of the 8,000 RNLI launches each year are to leisure craft users - so the RNLI needs this group to become members and regular financial supporters. With this in mind, the RNLI has launched 'Serious Fun!' their Leisure marine fundraising campaign. More information can be found at

Notes to editors

RNLI media contacts
For more information please contact Steve Tollett, RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on or Tim Ash, Deputy Media Relations Manager South East and London on 07785 296252 or or contact RNLI Public Relations on 01202 336789

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Key facts about the RNLI
The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 230 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and has more than 100 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 137,000 lives.

A charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SCO37736). Charity number CHY 2678 in the Republic of Ireland