Crew rescued from burning fishing vessel off Arran

Amy Harris rescue The crew were plucked off the Amy Harris by an Royal Navy rescue helicopter

Four crew members have been airlifted to safety from a burning fishing vessel off the coast of the isle of Arran.

A mayday was issued from the Amy Harris shortly after 15:00 and coastguard and lifeboats were scrambled to the scene.

A Royal Navy helicopter from Prestwick winched the men from the boat and they have been taken to Campbeltown. They are understood to be safe and well.

The vessel is drifting and on fire off the south tip of Arran. Emergency services are monitoring the situation.

Belfast Coastguard received the mayday reporting smoke coming from the engine room, with the crew unable to access the wheelhouse.

Distress call

The fishermen kept in touch using a mobile phone until the helicopter arrived and winched them from the burning boat.

Ian Graham, watch officer at Belfast Coastguard, said: "The fishermen carried out the correct procedure in making a distress call to the Coastguard so we could call out the appropriate rescue services to go their aid.

"They remained on the vessel, until the helicopter arrived to assist within 20 minutes, but they made ready their liferaft as a precaution."

The Campbeltown Lifeboat remains in the area, along with Arran Coastguard, monitoring the burning vessel.

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