South West Wales

Harrogate sailor rescued by helicopter off Pembrokeshire

A woman has been winched from a yacht off the Welsh coast after falling ill, say rescue services.

An RAF helicopter plucked the 24-year-old woman off the vessel 27 miles south west of St Anne's Head, Pembrokeshire, after she reported abdominal pains.

The woman, from Harrogate, Yorkshire, was flown to hospital in Haverfordwest.

A yacht crewman was injured steadying the helicopter winch cable, but stayed on board to sail into Milford Haven on Tuesday evening for treatment.

The alarm was first raised at 14:21 BST when the 10m yacht "Ruth", on a passage from Dartmouth to Dublin, contacted coastguards by VHF radio.

Milford Haven coastguards said the VHF transmission was hard to receive as the boat was low in the water and some distance out at sea.

An RAF Sea King helicopter from Chivenor in Devon was sent out to pick up the woman, who was flown to Withybush Hospital.

Rescue services said the yachtsman bandaged his injured hand but had requested help from an ambulance and coastguards on his arrival at Milford Haven marina.

The yacht is believed to be based at a marina in Dun Laoghaire, just to the south of Dublin.

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