LIFEBOAT crews responded to a distress call from a yacht which posed a potential collision risk with a container ship.

The Harwich Inshore Lifeboat operated by the RNLI was dispatched to assist an 18’ yacht yesterday.

The yacht was facing difficulties and was said to be “drifting dangerously across Harwich Harbour, posing a potential collision risk with a container ship berthed at the port of Felixstowe.”

There was one person on board the yacht at the time of the incident.

The volunteer crew assessed the situation and found the casualty vessel had already been towed to safer waters by another yacht.

One of the RNLI crew members boarded the distressed yacht to regain control and ensure its safe navigation.

The volunteers helped to determine the cause, which was found to be a fouled sail and they worked to clear the issue and the yacht was able to sail safely again.

A spokesman for the Harwich RNLI said: “Once the sail was cleared and the yacht regained control, the casualty vessel was able to sail unassisted again.

“The grateful individual on board expressed their sincere appreciation for the RNLI's timely assistance.

“With the situation resolved and the safety of the yacht assured, the RNLI's ILB ‘Tierney, Harvey and Sonny Reid’ was instructed to stand down.

“It then returned to its base at the Harwich station, where the volunteer crew members resumed their readiness to respond to any future emergencies.”