Crew saved as boat goes down

Trawler Norma T, RNLI lifeboat
Trawler sinks south of Langstone Harbour Photo: RNLI

The Portsmouth lifeboat has rescued two men from a trawler just before it sank. The crew of the Norma T lifeboat responded to a Mayday from the trawler which was about 2 miles from Langstone Harbour in Hampshire.

The vessel was already sinking when the rescue crew arrived to help those onboard to safety. Pete Slidel the Portsmouth lifeboat's helmsman clambered onto the trawler to assist with the transfer. Just after the first person transferred from the trawler to the lifeboat, the trawler's engines failed.

The RNLI crew managed to get the second person on board but then the lifeboat was pushed away leaving the volunteer rescuer on board the stricken trawler. Pete Slidel managed to jump clear. The lifeboat managed to secure the second casualty but was pushed away by the swell before the volunteer crewman was able to jump clear and he was left swimming behind the fishing boat as it sank.

After the engine cut out, It was only about four or five seconds before the boat started to go, as the Bow went up on the next wave the Stern just went under and it began to capsize.

– Pete Slidel, Helmsman of Portsmouth lifeboat the Norma T
Trawler rescue
Dramatic rescue as trawler sinks Credit: RNLI

Gosport rescue managed to pick Pete Slidel up. The fishermen were taken back to the boathouse.

Helmsman Pete Slidel and Gosport Rescue stayed on the scene to collect debris from the sunken trawler and marked the wreck's position with a buoy.

Trawler & lifeboat Norma T
Rescue happened 2 miles off Langstone Harbour in Hampshire Credit: RNLI