Thirty-two people had to be rescued from the Manguito boat after it suffered a rupture and started leaking on Saturday afternoon, off the coast of Portimão.

According to reports, the alarm that the vessel was in trouble was raised at around 4.20pm.

The boat is understood to have suffered a breakdown while sailing the Algarve’s famous coastal caves, causing it to scrape the boat’s hull against rocks, rupturing it.

The Manguito was heading head back to Portimão and ran ashore on the Marina beach to avoid sinking.

Local lifeboats were dispatched to assist the evacuation, which saw the 32 people – among them five children - safely removed from the boat.

Witnesses said no one required medial assistance and the rescue was swift and efficient.

Operations were carried out on Sunday to remove the beached boat from the spot.

In a statement, the National Maritime Authority said the local command dispatched “a Maritime Police vessel and two life-boats from Ferragudo” to carry out the rescue.

“The vessel was stranded inside [Portimão] port on the marina beach in order to avoid sinking, with 32 passengers (including five children) being rescued by lifeboats and requiring no medical attention”.

It added there was no risk of oil pollution since the fuel tanks were intact.

Speaking to newspaper Correio da Manhã, the Manguito’s captain, Miguel Vale, said that although the boat was taking on water, he decided to sail to the beach of the Marina, where it ran aground.

“The important thing was to save people”, he said.

Hours earlier a separate incident involving a tourist boat occurred a short distance away.
A man was left seriously injured when the vessel,

on a grotto tour, scraped the top of a cave on the Lagoa coastline, causing two people to fall.

Lusa News Agency reported the boat was carrying 22 passengers and four crew when it entered Alfanzina grotto on the Carvoeiro coastline, in Lagoa, some 10kms east of Portimão.

Newspaper Sol claimed the seriously injured victim was of Portuguese nationality and was taken to Portimão Hospital.

It said around 25 people were on board, and the accident happened at 1.36pm, on Saturday afternoon.