A fishing boat was rescued early this morning after running aground in the Tyne Harbour.
Tynemouth RNLI all-weather lifeboat was requested to launch at 4am by UK Coastguard's Humber Operations Centre after it received a report from Port of Tyne Vessel Traffic Services that a fishing vessel had run aground inside the south Tyne pier after losing steering.
The lifeboat, Spirit of Northumberland, sped the short distance across the lower Tyne harbour and quickly located the stricken vessel, the 18-metre, 87-tonne Fraserburgh-based Shaulora, which had four fishermen on board.
The skipper confirmed that his boat was not badly damaged or taking on water.
The lifeboat crew attached a tow rope to pull the Shaulora away from the pier.
Once that was complete, and the Harbourmaster was happy that there was no danger of her sinking in the harbour, the crew towed her to safety at Western Quay, North Shield, where members of the Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade were waiting to help with berthing.
Adrian Don, Tynemouth RNLI spokesman, said: said: "Our volunteer crew members responded quickly to the potentially life-threatening situation of a vessel that may have been sinking.
"Thankfully the Shaulora wasn't badly damaged, none of the fishermen were injured and the fishing vessel was towed to safety in a textbook operation."