A boat's master, accused of poor seamanship before a crash into rocks, near a popular Isle of Wight viewpoint, has appeared at the Isle of Wight Crown Court.

The incident led to multiple casualties being taken to hospital — some were airlifted.

Appearing in court by video link, Ian Sullivan, of South Marston, Wiltshire, was due to offer his plea to an indictment, prepared by prosecutor, the Maritime Coastguard Agency (MCA), this morning (Monday, April 24).

However, the wording of the indictment was challenged by Mr Sullivan's counsel, Mark Ashley, and will require redrafting to be put before his client.

When he appeared before Island magistrates on February 16, Mr Sullivan faced charges of misconduct of master/crew likely to endanger ships, structures and/or individuals.

The MCA also accused him of failing to maintain a proper lookout by sight, hearing and all other available means, and failing to proceed at a safe speed, so his vessel could take proper and effective action to avoid collision, which caused, or was likely to have caused, the death or serious injury to a person.

The charges relate to Mr Sullivan being the master of Sully, a vessel which crashed near the Headon Warren viewpoint, close to The Waterfront Bar and Restaurant in Totland, in September 2022.

In the wake of the incident, multiple casualties were taken to hospital.

Some were airlifted to the mainland after suffering 'serious injuries', said HM Coastguard at the time. 

Mr Sullivan was bailed to reappear for a plea and trial preparation hearing at Portsmouth Crown Court, on May 19.