HM Coastguard has coordinated the evacuation and rescue of 23 passengers and two crew from a small pleasure vessel.

The vessel Gower Ranger broadcast a mayday message just after 7pm yesterday evening (Tuesday, July 9).

The vessel had begun taking water rapidly whilst on a trip off the North Bishops, near Ramsay Island.

It is understood the boat had hit a rock. 

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Two other passenger vessels quickly came to the aid of the vessel and the Coastguard requested the St David’s and Fishguard All-Weather RNLI Lifeboats to launch and bring pumps. The Coastguard rescue helicopter from Newquay was also scrambled.

The two lifeboats provided safety cover whilst the passengers and crew were evacuated from the casualty vessel onto one of the other passenger vessels.

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PICTURE: St Davids coastguards

Dai John, RNLI Coxswain at St Davids said: "We launched very quickly but were relieved to find all passengers had been safely evacuated.

"Two of the St Davids' RNLI crew boarded the vessel with a salvage pump to bail out the water as fast as possible. The crew then secured a tow to the vessel and started an alongside tow for three miles journey from North Bishop Rock to St Justinians.

"Fishguard RNLI crew were also on scene with a salvage pump in case it was required. St Davids’ inshore lifeboat also assisted to help pull the vessel on to the beach."

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PICTURE: St Davids coastguard

The passengers were being taken back to St Justians to be met by the St Davids Coastguard Rescue Team.

The casualty vessel with pumps on board headed towards Porthclais.

St Davids Coastguard Rescue Team thanked Blue Shark Charters for taking the passengers aboard and Voyages of Discovery for standing by.