FOUR people had to be rescued after a boat started taking on water near to West Kilbride on Saturday.

The Ardrossan Coastguard Rescue Team was called out shortly after 6pm to reports of a vessel taking on water near West Kilbride and the team responded immediately with an update received that the casualty vessel had four persons on board with one team member gearing up for immediate deployment into the water as a water rescue operator.

Largs Coastguard Rescue Team, Largs Lifeboat and RNLI Troon Lifeboat were also launched to assist.

As the team arrived on scene alongside Largs Coastguard Rescue Team, Largs Lifeboat was also on scene with two crew members deployed onto the casualty vessel to render assistance.

All persons on board were safe and well however the vessel was aground and taking on water, albeit the tide was going out.

After several attempts to tow the vessel into deeper water, the decision was made to remove the four casualties from the vessel onto the lifeboat. The lifeboat crew undertook this task with the team standing by ready to deploy into the water should additional assistance be required.

Following the successful transfer of the casualties, the lifeboat proceeded to Largs Marina where they were met by the team alongside and assistance provided with regards to transport home and also suitable advice on recovery options for the boat, which would require to be salvaged by a professional company.