As warm and calm weather encourages migrants to attempt the hazardous sea crossing from France to Britain, navy and coastguard services are being pressed into action to prevent more lives being lost in the increasingly deadly Channel. In an operation witnessed by AFP on Monday, 56 migrants, including a pregnant woman and children, were plucked from their flimsy inflatable boat whose engine had broken down. Dozens of people were crammed into the vessel which left the wide sandy beaches of the French coast in the early hours of Monday morning in a bid to complete the short trip across the narrow stretch of water. But only two hours after leaving, their outboard engine stalled, leaving the mostly male group from the Middle East and Africa drifting in one of the world’s biggest shipping lanes. “The situation in the boat was very difficult, no water, nothing,” said 28-year-old Mohammed once safely aboard the French rescue ship, the Abeille Languedoc, which is based in the nearby French port of Boulogne-sur-Mer.