Lifeboat crews were scrambled into action to help a sticken fishing boat that had run aground of the coast of Fife in what turned out to be the first of two emergency rescues.
Anstruther RNLI rushed to assist the crew of the boat after after they reported the vessel was taking on water and encountering serious mechanical failure off the coast of Pittenweem.
The alarm was raised shortly before 3pm yesterday (Thursday) with a number of vessels in the area also coming to assist in the rescue.
The Helm of the inshore lifeboat carefully pulled the fishing vessel to safety, navigating through the rocks on its way towards open waters and the safety of St Monans harbour.
Soon after a second call for help was received from a nearby fishing vessel which required assistance after becoming entangled on a creel rope. The all-weather lifeboat established a tow to bring the boat and its crew to safety.
Commenting on the double emergency, Coxswain Michael Bruce praised the quick decision of the fishermen in raising the alarm
Michael said: “A mayday is the highest level of distress call available and using this ultimately saved the vessel from sinking.
“When the mechanical issues arose, the alternative was to risk deep open waters and attempt a landing into Pittenweem.
“If the fisherman had chosen this option, we could be looking at a very different outcome.
“He did the right thing to call for help.”
He also praised the quick response of neighbouring vessels in answering the mayday call.
“The use of mayday in an emergency certainly served its purpose on this occasion and is a timely reminder to all in what to do if you are or see someone in difficulty”.