Cornwall

Isles of Scilly harbour death: Man falls from yacht mast

  • 18 June 2013
  • From the section Cornwall
Windrose in St Mary's harbour
Image caption The yacht had been moored in St Mary's harbour since Sunday

A man has fallen to his death from the mast of a stricken yacht which had been towed into a harbour in the Isles of Scilly.

The victim, believed to be a 62-year-old Dutch national, fell from the Windrose at about 20:30 BST on Monday at St Mary's quayside.

He was airlifted to hospital in Truro but died later from his injuries.

It is understood the yacht had been boarded as part of a Border Force operation shortly before the incident.

Devon and Cornwall Police said the matter had been referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

A spokesperson said the police investigation would focus on how the man came to fall from the mast.

He said he believed Border Force, formerly known as the UK Border Agency, had been there at the time.

The yacht had been towed into the Isles of Scilly on Sunday by the RNLI after the skipper reported he was suffering from fatigue and his rigging was failing "on the lee side of the mast".

The lifeboat was launched and two of the crew boarded the 11m (36ft) yacht to assist him.

Dale Clark, St Mary's harbour master, said the man had been sailing the yacht alone.

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