Cornwall

Fishermen rescued from life raft off Isles of Scilly

Rescue Image copyright Irish Coast Guard
Image caption The skipper and four crew clambered from the raft on to a trawler called the Cu Na Mara

Five fishermen have been rescued from a life raft after their fishing boat sank in gale force winds off the Isles of Scilly.

A major air and sea search was launched after the UK Coastguard received two distress calls just after 23:45 BST from the vessel, called the Kairos.

The Scottish skipper and four Filipino crew clambered from the raft to a trawler called the Cu Na Mara which was in the area.

All crew are believed to be unhurt.

Falmouth Coastguard coordinated the search after the Banff-registered boat sank 75 miles (121 km) west of the Isles of Scilly.

Strong gale

Two Irish Coastguard search and rescue helicopters, the RNLI St Mary's lifeboat, fishing vessels and two commercial ships were involved in the operation.

Jim Morrison, from UK Coastguard, said: "Thankfully all the crew were rescued. An incident such as this shows the value of having digital selective calling and an electronic position indicating radio beacon on board.

Image copyright Davie Tait
Image caption The vessel, pictured in 2014, was renamed Kairos
Image copyright Google
Image caption The Kairos fishing boat sank 75 miles (121 miles) off the Isles of Scilly

"Using the information from the distress alerts we were able to locate the fishing vessel's last position quickly and deploy resources to the scene.

"It was a very strong gale force eight wind and sea states were reported between four and six metres."

The rescued men have been taken to Castletownbere in Ireland and the Marine Accident Investigation Bureau is investigating.

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