A fisherman has cheated death after his boat sank in seconds, leaving him clinging to wreckage until a lifeboat found him.
The 55-year-old managed to make a mayday call to coastguards when his boat started taking in water off the Berwickshire coast. Before the mayday was finished the 25ft boat rolled over, throwing its owner into the sea.
Coastguards requested emergency help from Dunbar’s RNLI all-weather lifeboat. Dunbar lifeboat Coxswain Gary Fairbairn said the stricken boat was about four miles south east of the lifeboat’s berth at Torness Power Station.
“When we got there the front of the boat was sticking upright out of the water,” he said. “I had to put one of our crew over the side in case the man was trapped inside. Crewman Alistair Punton was banging on the outside of the hull to see if there was a response from inside when one of the other lifeboat crew saw the man floating in the water about 300 yards away.
“The casualty was extremely cold, possibly hypothermic, and so we got him below and started warming him up.”
The fisherman was checked but declined hospital treatment.