Unfortunately there is sometimes sad news to tell as well. On 20 December the tug Flying Phantom (picture right) capsized on the Clyde and three men lost their lives. One of them was Bob Cameron who was a well known figure on Islay. Bob owned the cottage near the Ballygrant Inn which he was rebuilding last year. In the meanwhile a Book of Condoleances has been setup for the victims of this terrible tragedy. Brian O'Donnell organised the book as a tribute to his former workmates. He had last saw the crew just two days before the accident, when he went down to the docks to wish them all the best for the festive period.
A Quote from the Shipping Times: The Clydeside maritime community is in shock after the loss of the tug FLYING PHANTOM in thick fog on the River Clyde last night, December 20. At 6.42 pm Clyde Coastguard received a 999 call from Community Safety Officer who heard one of the crew's cries for help in the water. The tugs owners, Svitzer, say that radio contact with the tug was lost, and no mayday had been sent. This may indicate her loss was sudden.
The Scotsman reports that the Islay Lifeboat was called out yesterday: A major rescue mission was launched last night after a fishing vessel started taking on water in gale-force conditions. Lifeboats were launched from Islay and Barra and a Royal Navy rescue helicopter was dispatched from Prestwick after the crabber's seven-man crew sent out a mayday message at 8:10pm. Despite 10ft waves and force-seven winds, a water pump was airlifted on to the UK-registered vessel, which was south-west of Tiree. Four of the crew were taken off. A spokesman for Clyde Coastguard said attempts would be made to bail out enough water to allow the boat to be towed back to shore. The Niamh Aine is expected to dock in Port Askaig around noon.