LIFEBOAT volunteers were scrambled to help a stranded yacht crew.
The team from Sunderland RNLI lifeboat station were called into action after reports of a 30ft yacht with a fouled propeller.
The vessel, which was travelling from Plymouth, had become entangled in lobster pots near Roker Pier.
As the inshore lifeboat sped to the scene and two vessels from Northumbria Police marine unit were also put on standby as a precaution.
RNLI helmsman Clive Fallon said: “After assessing the situation, we decided to put one of our volunteer crewmen into the water to cut the line free from the seabed.
“As the line had become fouled around both the propeller and the rudder, it was necessary for us to tow the vessel back into port to allow the line to be cleared by divers in daylight.”
After establishing a tow, the boat and its three-man crew were taken to a temporary mooring at Sunderland Marina on Thursday night.
“We urge anyone setting out lobster pots to ensure that they use suitable marker buoys and non-floating lines of a correct length,” added Clive.