A French yachtsman who was badly injured in difficult sailing conditions on the Solent today (Saturday), has been helped by the crew of Cowes RNLI.

The alarm was raised by the crew of the 38-foot Canberra Star, reporting that a member had injured his back when the boat was in the Osborne Bay area.

The yacht made its way to Trinity Landing, off Cowes Parade, where it was joined by the lifeboat.

Members of the lifeboat crew went on board to carry out a full assessment of the injured man, found to be wedged in the cockpit.

Then began the process of trying to extract the injured yachtsman, who is thought to have fallen in the galley and was going in and out of consciousness.

Involved in the evacuation were members of the lifeboat and the station’s shore-crew, together with harbour staff and the crew of an ambulance.

The man, thought to be in his early 40s, was lifted on to a stretcher-board and carried to a waiting ambulance, which took him to St Mary’s Hospital.

The Canberra Star was on charter from Gosport. The lifeboat returned to station just after 1pm.