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Last Updated: Friday, 21 March 2008, 15:19 GMT
'Wrecked' boat's skipper praised
Trawler, Spinningdale
The Spinningdale's skipper was praised for saving his crew
The skipper of a fishing boat which ran aground on the remote Hebridean islands of St Kilda has been praised for ensuring the safety of his crew.

The Spinningdale ran aground on St Kilda's main island, Hirta, during a storm in February.

Four of the 14 man crew suffered hypothermia while another broke a finger in the incident.

A Marine Accident Investigation Branch report said the skipper ensured the safe of crew members.

He also maintained their morale while awaiting rescue, the report said.

The preliminary report by the MAIB said an initial attempt to winch the crew to safety had to be aborted due to the extreme weather conditions.

'Extreme conditions'

It said the engines stopped in the middle of the night and the captain woke his crew and made a mayday call.

The report said the Spinningdale's Spanish skipper kept up crew morale, as they took shelter for three hours in the stricken vessel's wheelhouse, while waiting to be rescued.

Eight tonnes of fuel oil was leaked into the sea during the incident, the report said.

The MAIB has recommended that the owners consider supplying their crews with immersion suits for use in such extreme conditions, even though there is no statutory requirement to do so.

The National Trust for Scotland, which looks after St Kilda, were concerned that rats may have escaped from the vessel when it ran aground.

They said there was a potential risk to St Kilda's ground nesting seabirds.

A specialist team found there was no evidence that this was the case.



SEE ALSO
Race to salvage stricken trawler
18 Mar 08 |  Highlands and Islands
Sub wreck firm to remove trawler
24 Feb 08 |  Highlands and Islands
Bad weather delays trawler probe
14 Feb 08 |  Highlands and Islands

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