The MAIB has given noticed that it intends to raise the wreck of the Nicola Faith.

The MAIB has given noticed that the wreck of the Nicola Faith is to be raised

The Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) has issued an update on the investigation into the sinking of the Nicola Faith off Colwyn Bay on 27 January 2021.

The MAIB has given noticed that it intends to raise the wreck of the Nicola Faith.

The Nicola Faith disappeared on a fishing trip after departing the north Wales fishing town on the morning of Wednesday, 27 January last. After the boat and it’s three crew failed to return home that night a search was launched by HM Coast Guard which included Rhyl, Bangor and Llandudno Coastguard Rescue Teams along with five RNLI lifeboats from Rhyl, Llandudno & Conwy. The HM Coastguard search and rescue helicopter from Caernarfon assisted with the searches and a fixed-wing Coastguard aircraft from Doncaster. The North Wales Police also assisted in the search.

On 29 January, the search was stood down pending further inquiries.

The three missing crew members were Alan Minard (20), Ross Ballantine (39) and skipper Carl McGrath (34).

On 27 January, the boats liferaft was found off Kirkcudbrightshire by HM Coastguard.

In mid-March three bodies were recovered from the coastline off the Wirral and Blackpool and they were later confirmed as belonging to the missing crewmen from the Nicola Faith.

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The wreck of the Nicola Faith was eventually found on 13 April, 177 metres from its last reported location on the night the boat and her crew disappeared.

Since locating and identifying Nicola Faith in April, the MAIB has gathered and analysed dive survey data from the vessel. We now intend to raise the vessel so that an in-depth examination and stability analysis can be carried out.

The vessel will be raised using a specially designed barge crane that has been chartered by MAIB. The operation will be undertaken when weather and tidal conditions are suitable. It will then be taken ashore to a secure location for further examination before being prepared for a stability assessment.

The Chief Inspector’s notice to prohibit access to the wreck remains in place. The families of the crew members have been notified of the plans.

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