Several vessels in the area, including the Newhaven pilot boat Pelorus, reported the sighting to Dover Coastguard who requested the immediate launch of Eastbourne lifeboats. Pelorus which was on a training exercise off Cuckmere Haven was first on scene and took the lone angler off the well ablaze 27ft motor cruiser ‘Knowwanda’. The inshore lifeboat arrived shortly after and transferred the casualty to Eastbourne all-weather lifeboat.
The vessel was considered a be a hazard to navigation in its current position so a towline was rigged and the cruiser taken to the beach east of Eastbourne pier where it was met by units from Eastbourne Fire and Rescue service. The fire was extinguished but unfortunately the vessel was beyond repair and abandoned on the beach. The owner of the vessel was taken to Eastbourne DGH for a precautionary examination for possible smoke inhalation.
See video clip at http://rnli.org/Pages/Video-Details.aspx?VideoItemID=SyiCLH5D
In a later incident the ILB was tasked to assist a 19ft open fishing boat with engine failure three miles off Sovereign Harbour. The vessel was taken under tow to the safety of the marina locks