The incredible moment a fisherman is airlifted to safety after a “freak wave” capsized his boat in Stonehaven has been captured on camera.
The rescue that took place earlier this morning saw a crewman lifted from the sinking hull of his fishing boat near Cowie and into the care of the ambulance service.
The man waited on the hull of his boat for around 20 minutes, before he got himself on to the rope that winched him to safety.
Eyewitnesses say the fisherman was in the water for 20 minutes clinging to the boat as he waited for emergency services to arrive.
The incident happened at 8.39am this morning when emergency services were made aware of a man in the water at Stonehaven Harbour.
The man was winched to safety before he was taken to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary.
Making the emergency call was Craig Pollard.
Boat was hit by ‘freak wave’
The 18-year-old joiner who was waiting in his works van for the day to start.
He describes seeing the boat being hit by a “big wave”.
He said: “I hope the guy is ok. I am just really worried about him. It was really shocking.
Craig explained what happened. He said: “I was waiting in my work’s van at an old folks home when we saw the boat going along in the distance.
“We were watching the boat go along when all of a sudden it was hit by a big wave.”
Saying that the sea conditions were fairly calm, he said it was a “freak wave”.
He continued: “It did not look as though it was big or strong enough to flounder the fishing vessel.”
‘I saw the boat flipping over’
Craig, from Portlethen, continued: “I saw the boat flipping over and I called 999. It was just a reaction and what you should do.
“To me, the wave did not look big enough to flip over the boat, but it did.
“I had to phone back a few times with more information as the boat started to sink.
“I didn’t know what to do other than make that phone call. I wish I could have done more.
“I just hope that the guy is doing ok.”
Another eyewitness said: “Staff at the golf course noticed a creel boat caught in a heavy swell just off the rocks at Cowie.
“The greenkeeper then rushed to the clubhouse to say it had capsized.”
Staff called emergency services and then waited “an eternity” for help.
They watched the man in the water, clinging to his boat “for a good 20 minutes”.