#Spindrift - The race-winning multihull Spindrift has capsized in gale force winds off Dun Laoghaire this afternoon (22 June) at the start of the Route des Princes series of inshore racing spectacle on Dublin Bay, as David O'Brien reports on scene.
Rescue photos below.
The accident happened about 700 metres off the starting line in the first race, as the boats were accelerating in the strong and gusty winds. The boats were not carrying full sail as a precaution against the strong offshore winds blowing in the bay. Today's in–port racing was billed as 'fast and furious'.
At least one person is injured and is being treated upturned hull of the stricken craft. As of 3.08pm a rescue helicopter was dropping its winchman to the vessel.
It is feared by National Yacht Club personnel that the mast of the inverted trimaran is stuck in the sea bed and may be broken.
All racing has now been postponed as rescue services attended the scene. Eight crew were onboard the vessel at the time of the capsize.
Update 3.10pm: All other boats have returned to Dun Laoghaire Harbour as rescue services continue to attend to the capsized Spindrift and its crew.
Update 3.39pm: The crewman casualty has been winched to the helicopter and is being airlifted to Tallaght Hospital. His condition remains unclear.
Update 3.41pm: Triage for any injured racers has been set up at the National Yacht Club and all rescue boats have been asked to report to the NYC to account for numbers.
Update 3.53pm: Assessments are currently being made as to how to recover the 70ft hull still floating north of Dalkey Island.
Update 4.04pm: Sailing journalist Kate Laven comments on Twitter re the Spindrift capsize: "Everyone recovered but two injured"
Update 4.08pm: The Route des Princes website has followed up its earlier update with a news post which confirms that weather conditions at the time of the Spindrift capsize were 20 knots with strong gusts.
Update 4.55pm: Dun Laoghaire lifeboat towing the upturned Spindrift hull (minus mast) towards Dun Laoghaire harbour
Update 6,00pm: The upturned hull has been successfully righted, the hull is intact but the mast is broken.
Update 7.00pm: There are unconfirmed reports that the injury to the Spindrift crew man is a broken pelvis.
Update 8.00pm: Spindrift racing team release statement on capsize and injury to crew member
Rescue craft, local boats and the Dun Laoghaire lifeboat attend the upturned hull. Photo: Gareth Craig
The Coastguard helicopter arrives on scene and a winch man is lowered to make an assessment. Photo: Afloat.ie
Rescue personnel and Sprindrift crew on the upturned hull in Dublin Bay this afternoon. Photo: Afloat.ie
Spindrift minus her mast is lifted in Dun Laoghaire harbour this evening. Photo: Michael Chester