A recently bolstered Highland lifeboat crew is on the lookout for more volunteers – for the busiest spell of the year.
The East Sutherland Rescue Association (Esra) inshore lifeboat at Dornoch has attracted talented recruits this year but is scouting for others to meet its full complement.
Six additional crew – two of them women – have joined the ranks in recent weeks, taking the tally to 11.
They were urgently needed after the departure of three regulars within a fortnight due to various work commitments. The team is keen to add five more.
The 25-year-old unit has had four callouts so far this year, the most challenging on Wednesday which was rated by Esra chairman and veteran helmsman Neil Dalton as “tricky,” due to rough water across the Dornoch Firth to Portmahomack.
The lifeboat launched after a 2.55pm callout, into a strong and fast surf off Dornoch beach at low tide with three crew aboard – Mr Dalton, Antony Hope and Iain Carlton.
In a 45-minute operation, they faced 8ft breaking waves and a Force 5 wind to rescue the locally registered 17ft motor yacht “Wee Archie.” It had lost engine power, anchoring in rough seas a few miles west of Portmahomack.
She was safely towed into port and the yacht’s three-man crew was none the worse for the ordeal.
Anyone interested in volunteering should call Gareth Dixon on 07775 641616 or Antony Hope on 07710 301387.
Full training is provided along with personal protection equipment including dry suit, lifejacket, helmet and gloves.