EXMOUTH NCI COASTWATCH INCIDENTS - 2017
17 December Watchkeepers Graham Nye and Karen Goldby observed a telegraph pole floating 40m offshore from the lookout plus 5-6 smaller pieces of timber. Solent CG advised it was considered a danger to shipping (also observed by Pride of Exmouth). Solent CG updated until pole beached opposite the Octagon. Exmouth CG Mobile (x4) removed pole above HW mark and visited the lookout to confirm removal.
20 October Having received a report of a boat adrift off Starcross, Solent CG contacted Watchkeepers Hugh Sutherland and Mike Greenwood to ask if they had heard any radio traffic or seen anything. Nothing had been seen or heard so Solent CG closed the incident.
16 October Watchkeepers Ian Coupe and John Bradley called by MoP to report a white vessel, later identified as speedboat 'Lady J', adrift between Exmouth and Lympstone. Reported to Solent CG but RNLI unwilling to launch in current weather conditions. Mobile CG deployed and a caller advised that speedboat was underway with owner onboard. ILB launched and escorted speedboat safely to mooring. MoP who made initial call informed.
7 October Watchkeepers Mike Fowler and Patrick McCahearty observed windsurfer signalling for help - struggling to get back onto board. After repeated attempts Solent CG informed of situation. Windsurfer eventually regained control and returned to beach safely. Solent CG informed.
22 September Watchkeepers Ian Coupe and Dick Barton contacted by Solent CG to request observation of two persons stranded on Bull Hill at the mouth of the Exe estuary. Solent CG advised persons spotted and clothing described - watchkeepers asked to maintain visual observation. Stranded persons picked up by water taxi and transferred to ILB who landed them at Exmouth marina.
21 September Watchkeepers David Lowder and Ivor Jones contacted by Solent CG, who had received a corrupted pan-pan urgency call picked up by the Berry Head receiver. The only readable part of the message was "MMS 75300". Solent CG requested we maintain a visual and radio watch but nothing heard or observed by the end of the daily watch.
17 September Watchkeepers Mike Dance and Willie Beaton monitored radio comms between Solent CG and speedboat 'Orca II' reporting loss of power and requesting assistance. Solent CG requested details of 'Orca II', position believed to be off Orcombe Point. Solent CG informed that 'Orca II' had been logged passing Tower heading in easterly direction. Another vessel 'Magic' radioed that they had 'Orca II' under tow and were returning to Exmouth. 'Orca II' under tow by 'Magic' logged returning to Exmouth and Solent CG informed.
10 September Yacht 'Sula' reported engine failure off Teignmouth and requested tow. Teignmouth ILB tasked by Solent CG to assist . Watchkeepers Ian Coupe and Chris Emmings monitored radio comms and, as comms difficult between 'Sula', Solent CG and ILB, offered to act as relay, which was accepted by Solent CG. Teignmouth ILB took 'Sula' in tow and watchkeepers thanked by Solent CG for assistance.
3 September Watchkeepers Mo Kendall and Gordon Betteridge spotted partially submerged dinghy in channel floating out to sea. Position (near No 10 buoy) passed to Solent CG. CG mobile patrol requested current position and Exmouth ILB sighted searching for dinghy. Current position again passed to Solent CG. Dinghy located by ILB and towed to beach above HW mark.
27 August Watchkeepers Maggie Quaddy and Ruth Burnett contacted by member of public (MoP) reporting boy aged 2-3 years who had attached himself to her group on the beach. No sign of the boy's family but he didn't seem upset. Watchkeepers observed boy on the beach and telephoned police giving details. MoP returned to Tower saying mother had reclaimed child. Police informed and no further action taken.
19 August Watchkeepers Ian Coupe and Paul Martin observed speedboat opposite Tower - possibly broken down. Informed Solent CG and asked to keep watching brief. Occupants seen using mobile phone and working on fuel line. Shortly afterwards speedboat got underway and returned to Exmouth. Solent CG informed.
19 August Watchkeepers Ian Coupe and Paul Martin asked by Solent CG whether speedboat 'Laar' had been seen. Not seen but 'Laar' had broken down off Budleigh Salterton. CG requested Tower keep watching brief. 'Southern Angler' requested details. Exmouth ILB and Sidmouth lifeboat launched. Speedboat had been towed to shore and given advice on safety.
13 Aug Watchkeepers Zan Nye and Gary Sherman monitored radio call between yacht 'New Dawn' and Solent CG - yacht aground on Pole Sands near No 2 buoy bearing 150 degrees from Tower. Contacted Solent CG to report yacht under observation. Fishing vessel 'Puddle Duck' attempted unsuccessful tow. ILB arrived and assisted 'New Dawn' to drop anchor and retrieved her detached dinghy. 'New Dawn' later refloated on rising tide.
10 Aug Watchkeepers Nick Hearn and Ruth Burnett observed yacht 'Cherie' drop anchor on incoming tide in channel opposite Tower. Yacht continued drifting with tide. Assistance of lifeguards requested to determine if yacht had problem. Radio call from Exmouth ILB - launching and requested yacht location - opposite Octagon. Lifeguards called - assistance no longer required. ILB took yacht under tow and reported by radio when yacht back at mooring. Solent CG confirmed yacht had 'loss of power'.
6 Aug Watchkeepers John Cox and Andrew Hinton contacted by Solent CG to keep an eye on vessel bearing 140 degrees 4 miles from Tower with no power and needing tow. CG call for any vessel to assist. Exmouth AWL launched and took vessel under tow into harbour.
4 Aug Watchkeepers Anthony Howell-Jones and Ivor Jones informed Solent CG that mobile pier on beach was defective and would be a danger to navigation if submerged by incoming tide. Marker buoy secured and Harbourmaster and RNLI lifeguards maintained watch until repairs effected.
31 Jul Watchkeepers John Cox and Val Ayling contacted by Solent CG requesting observation of two children reported to be floating out to sea on a rubber ring. Also contacted by RNLI with similar request. Nothing sighted. ILB launched to investigate and reported that MoP who first raised the alarm had seen the children come ashore assisted by a swimmer who had gone to their aid.
16 Jul Watchkeepers Paul Martin and Marion Ricketts contacted by a passing vessel reporting a loose tender found in Exmouth channel. The tender appeared to belong to a Teignmouth vessel. Exmouth NCI informed Teignmouth NCI of the details of the tender which was towed into Exmouth Marina.
2 Jul Watchkeepers Ian Coupe and Gary Sherman received call from M&S Charters reporting a swimmer in the red flag area about 150m East of the Tower and in danger of being 'run down'. Conducted visual sweep of area and requested RNLI Lifegaurds conduct similar search. No swimmer located in the danger area and no further action taken.
26 May Watchkeepers Bryan Scotting and Mike Greenwood observed group of teenagers swimming ashore from Pole Sands. One appeared to be in difficulty but was helped ashore by other members of the group. Solent CG phoned following a call from m.o.p. who had witnessed incident. Solent CG were informed that we had observed the incident and were satisfied that the swimmer was safely ashore without the need for further medical assistance.
26 May Watchkeepers Charles Darke and Val Mewse requested by Solent CG to observe jet ski reported to be sinking off Orcombe Point. No jet ski visible but reported that jet ski had been spotted heading east a short time previously. Solent CG were launching the ILB.
25 May Watchkeepers Hugh Sutherland and Gordon Betteridge advised Solent CG of yacht going aground while crossing Pole Sands heading West. Yacht kept under observation and refloated on rising tide before resuming passage up the Exe estuary.
23 May Watchkeepers Keith Burden and Mike Fowler contacted by Solent CG requesting a visual sighting on a large vessel reported to them by a member of the public. The vessel had been illuminated nightly for a number of days. Exmouth NCI identified the vessel as the Dutch tug 'Multrasalver' moored four miles off Exmouth on a bearing of 192 degrees, which was believed to be working on the Dawlish Warren sand transfer. Solent CG will report to member of the public.
25 Apr Watchkeepers Nick Hearn and Ian Coupe, carrying out maintenance on the Tower, contacted by Solent CG and asked to carry out visual surveillance on two paddle boarders in distress off Pole Sands about 1nm from the Tower. ILB launched, two casualties observed being taken on board and subsequently returned to the Lifeboat Station.
01 Apr Motor boat 'Blue Water' drifting East past Tower with motor boat 'Odyssey' attempting to tow. Contacted Solent CG - NCI requested to monitor. 'Blue Water/Odyssey' alongside each other proceeding West and finally entered Marina.
31 Mar RIB drifting East past Tower with engine failure. Solent CG informed - request NCI continue to monitor. Solent CG informed NCI that RIB had made 999 call and RNLI informed. RNLI recovered RIB to RNLI ramp.
27 Mar Motor boat 'Happy Hooker' sighted by watchkeepers Mary Hazlewood and Siobhan Dobbs aground in Western Passage on outgoing tide at 1245. Reported to Solent CG, advised that tide would turn in one hour, and continued to observe. Solent CG informed 'Happy Hooker' refloated at 1407.
29 Jan RNLI reported that a member of the public was concerned about a kitesurfer down. Watchkeepers Marion Ricketts and Dee Scott observed until kitesurfer was safely on shore.