iPhone app helped find lost boat

The boat in calmer waters The boat has now returned to calmer waters

A vessel in distress on the waterways between Kesh and Enniskillen owes its happy ending to an iPhone application.

Motor cruiser, the Wee Rascal, called 999 in the early hours of Sunday morning asking for assistance as the weather worsened.

However, an extensive search of the area around its reported position by Enniskillen RNLI and the Erne Coastguard Rescue team was fruitless.

With no flares, flash lights or VHF radio onboard, the Wee Rascal was unable to signal its position to rescuers.

It was then that the Belfast Coastguard resorted to mobile phone technology a locator iPhone app was able to give rescuers the vital latitude and longitude they needed.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency said the cruiser was finally located 25 miles away from its reported position, dangerously amongst the rocky shoreline off Eagle Point.

It was brought away from the rocks by Enniskillen and taken to the safety of Belleek marina.

Coastguard Watch Manager Steven Carson said it was a "combination of luck and technology" that saved those onboard.

"They had charts on board but obviously no real idea of how to get to their destination or how to report their position in an emergency," he continued.

"Vital hours were wasted eliminating one possible location after another, time that we wouldn't have had if the vessel had struck the rocks and sunk.

"I hope that this experience will help the crew to realise why navigation training is essential for all mariners, whether you're on a lough or the open sea."

Features

  • Nigel Farage (left) and Douglas CarswellWho's next?

    The Tory MPs being tipped to follow Carswell to UKIP


  • A painting of the White House on fire by Tom FreemanFinders keepers

    The odd objects looted by the British from Washington in 1814


  • President Barack Obama pauses during a press conference on 28 August.'No strategy'

    Obama's gaffe on Islamic State reveals political truth


  • Chris and Regina Catrambone with their daughter Maria LuisaSOS

    The millionaires who rescue people at sea


  • Plane7 days quiz

    What unusual offence got a Frenchman thrown off a plane?


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.