Last night saw the end of Cowes week culminate with a somewhat spectacular firework display
. With the racing being postponed on most days due to a lack of wind it was the power craft fraternity grabbing the incident headlines. One boat sunk another partially submerged with those onboard suffering serious injury and numerous other alcohol related incidents afloat
As we headed out of Cowes at about 1730 last night and headed back towards Gosport we passed all sorts of craft taking part in the mass exodus from the marinas, slipways and harbours doted along the Solent. Lost count of the number of open boats crewed by occupants wearing little more than shorts and sporting a can or bottle in hand, one hand on the helm the other on the bottle, what about the throttle ? Well, set to full ahead of course !!!!!!!!
QHM Portsmouth, Southampton VTS and Cowes Harbour Master all issued a joint Notice to Mariners advising of a 15 knot speed limit between the hours of 2130 and 2300, for the safety of all those afloat of course !!!!!!!
Fireworks over, head for home, despite regular vhf safety broadcasts by Solent Coastguard reminding all afloat of the speed restrictions the Ďfull throttle brigadeí are off again
. Within minutes there are red and white navlights spread between Cowes and Gilkicker and almost as many green and white towards Southampton Water. Some even tried to navigate directly to Portsmouth Harbour using the red light on top of the Spinnaker Tower; they must have been confused as to why they found the beach at Stokes Bay, Gosport.
With the coastguard only having to deal with one relatively serious incident last night, Yes drink related, I guess it was a successful end to yet another Cowes Week.