A north lifeboat crew was called to pump gallons of water from a sinking herring trawler yesterday.
RNLI volunteers from Wick responded to a Mayday call at 2pm, with two panicked fishermen reporting a “large ingress” of water about a mile east of Noss Head.
The Sardonyx II vessel’s own pumps were unable to cope with the volume coming aboard.
The lifeboat crew arrived at the scene within 20 minutes of the distress call, and two volunteers clambered aboard the stricken ship armed with a salvage pump.
Describing the scene later on social media, a spokesman for the Wick outfit said: “This helped stem the flow of water and the vessel gradually pumped out.
“This enabled the fishing boat to make for Wick with all pumps working, and escorted by the lifeboat in case of any further developments.
“Both vessels arrived safely in Wick Harbour 45 minutes later and the casualty was lifted from the water by crane for repairs.”
An accompanying video shows the fishing boat being escorted to the north port, with its rear still mostly submerged.
A spokesman for the coastguard service said: “The Sardonyx was taking in water and its own electric bilge pump was unable to keep out the ingress.
“Two members of the lifeboat crew went on board with pumps and assisted the vessel back to Wick.”