LIFEBOAT volunteers were diverted from a training exercise to rescue a stranded fishing boat.
Members of Sunderland RNLI Lifeboat Station were scrambled to help two anglers after their 18ft vessel reported engine failure.
Coastguard officers raised the alarm, after they received an emergency VHF radio call from the crew, stating that their boat was drifting four miles off Seaham.
The incident happened on Sunday morning.
After receiving launching authority approval, the lifeboat was diverted from its position near Sunderland and headed to the incident.
RNLI crewman Sam Clow said: “Thankfully, the stricken vessel was well-equipped, meaning her crew was able to quickly provide us with an accurate position.”
He added: “On arrival, the crew informed us that the recoil unit on their outboard engine had failed which meant they were unable to get back to shore without our assistance.”
After fixing a tow to their boat, the stranded crew, from West Boldon, was taken to Sunderland Marina.