Smooth operators

By: Dale Hodson

The Coastguard Hibiscus crew meet many fantastic people while on the job; we swap photos, stories and experiences while helping them get home safely.

On Saturday, October 6 we were tasked to a location northwest of Moturekareka Island to a very nice 6-metre hard-top trailer boat, Endless Summer, which was having engine problems. It was a lovely day and conditions were calm as we made our way from Gulf Harbour through the Tiri channel, northwest until we located her anchored safely.

As usual, we conducted an assessment of the area around the vessel and ensured it was safe to approach before we came alongside to find out a bit more about what had happened. It turned out the engine had recently been serviced and this was the owners’ first trip of the season, but unfortunately the engine wouldn’t restart.

The best tow point was the trailer eye, so we hooked them up and began a tow back to Stanmore Bay where they had launched. It was an easy and peaceful journey and once we arrived at Stanmore Bay, we pulled in the tow and brought them alongside our port side to collect details.

Sea conditions were calm and the drop off was going to be relatively easy. The crew held Endless Summer while I had the fun job on helm and approached the beach, all under the supervision of our skipper Matt. When we were in at around 1m of water, I reversed engines and the crew pushed the towed vessel towards the beach. Generally, this gives enough momentum for the other vessel to glide to shore where her skipper can jump off while our vessel can reverse out to deeper water and safety.

All went as planned, and after a wave to some friendly kids who had braved the early fine weather for a swim, we were on our way.

A huge thank you to the owners of Endless Summer for allowing me to share their details in my column.

I also wanted to mention a fantastic yearly event that Coastguard Hibiscus is lucky enough to be a part of each year: Carols on the Canal at Gulf Harbour on Saturday, December 15, from 11am to 2 pm. It’s an earlier event this year and if your kiddies would like to see Father Christmas arrive please be there by lunchtime and stay for the afternoon’s family-based activities.

Be safe everybody.

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