Sailor Airlifted To Safety

16 February 2016, 14:30

A man has been airlifted to safety after the yacht he was sailing ran aground off the west coast.

The coastguard received a mayday call from the sailor just after midnight on Tuesday.

A lifeboat from Islay reached the yacht near the Skerryvore lighthouse, close to the Isle of Tiree, at 3.30am and another boat from Barra was sent to assist.

UK Coastguard maritime operations controller Angus MacIver said: "The winds in the area were gusting at severe gale force with extremely rough seas which created a very testing environment in which this rescue could be carried out.

"The yachtsman is now being airlifted ashore and the RNLI lifeboats are returning to base.''

Rescue crews have been trying to attach a line to the yacht but failed.

A nearby cable-laying vessel was called to the scene to provide shelter from the weather but a coastguard helicopter had to be called.

The man was sailing alone and sustained no injuries.