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Two walkers were rescued by the RNLI inshore lifeboat from Dun Laoghaire shortly after midday today when the rising tide surrounded them half a mile from shore off Sandymount.

The pair raised the alarm by mobile phone to the Irish Coast Guard Dublin rescue co-ordination centre (MRCC Dublin) giving details of their difficulty. They then attempted to walk towards shore but with the water-level waist deep and rising they returned to the sandbank to await rescue. Their phone became water-logged in the fast-rising tide and with two hours to high-water, the sea-level was rising faster than walking in water-logged clothing would allow.

MRCC Dublin contacted the RNLI Inshore lifeboat (ILB) from Dun Laoghaire that was on exercise with four volunteer crew on board and requested that they proceed immediately to the scene. The Irish Coast Guard helicopter at Dublin Airport was also tasked and both arrived on scene at 12.15pm

The ILB crew walked the remaining 50-metres with life-jackets for the two walkers who were then brought by lifeboat to Dun Laoghaire. Neither was harmed though First Aid for a minor injury was given to one of the walkers. The Dun Laoghaire Coast Guard Unit attended at the RNLI station and brought the casualties back to their car at Sandymount by road.

“Walking on our local beaches is very popular but care is needed in respect of the state of tide that is constantly changing,” commented Robert Fowler, Deputy Launching Authority with Dun Laoghaire RNLI. “From low-tide to high, water-level can become several metres deep in the course of a long-walk at the waters’ edge.”

A recent risk-analysis by the RNLI for the Dun Laoghaire station indicates that walking poses one of the most significant hazards in the area with today’s incident the third of its kind to date this year.

The ILB is one of two lifeboats stationed by the RNLI at Dun Laoghaire and is ideal for operating in shallow water and close to rocks. The volunteer crew typically launch within six minutes of being paged but were already at sea today on one of two weekly routine training exercises.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Tagged under

There was almost a full turnout of the Fireballs registered for the 2015/16 Frostbites in Dun Laoghaire yesterday when 10 boats assembled on the start line for the first of two trapezoid-course races in sunshine but cool temperatures writes Cormac Bradley. The forecasts for the afternoon were a bit mixed with one site suggesting the N-Westerly would go Northerly and fade while another suggested it would go Southerly and build a little. In the end it was the former forecast that won out.

Two early practice rounds of the course revealed conditions that required trapezing upwind and tight spinnaker legs across the top and bottom of the trapezoid but as the afternoon progressed, the need for trapezing faded though the reaches were still lively.

In Race 1 the fleet had various ideas on how to work the first beat, the Clancy brothers, Conor and James, making a first appearance after a few weeks absence, decided that hitting the East Pier was the way to go with a weather mark just inside the end of the West Pier. The rest of the fleet demurred to varying degrees, preferring to work the middle and left of the course. The majority view was vindicated at the first weather mark with a rounding order of Noel Butler & Stephen Oram (15061), Alistair Court & Gordon Syme (14706), Darragh McDonagh & Neil Duke (14434), Neil Colin & John (14775), Frank Miller & Cormac Bradley (14713). Team Clancy were down in 7th in close proximity to Cariosa Power & Marie Barry (14854), Louise McKenna & Tim (14691), Mary Chambers & Brenda McGuire (14865) and Peter & Michael Keegan (14676).

By the time the first half of the fleet got to Mark 2, Butler & Oram had pulled out a short lead. At the gybe, Miller gained two places by getting inside McDonagh and Colin and with a faster spinnaker set was able to pull away and to windward of them – time to hunt down Court!

On the second beat, Miller worked the right hand side of the course while Butler and Court worked the middle. By the time they reached the 2nd weather mark, Miller had closed dramatically on Court and they rounded with Miller only just ahead. Butler of course was doing his normal thing of putting distance between himself and the rest of the fleet.  Halfway down the top leg of the trapezoid Miller was able to break the overlap with Court and put a few boat-lengths between the boats. This position was retained to the rounding of Mark 4. Behind them, Chambers had dropped out, Colin too had dropped out after an incident on the water and the chasing boats were now Power/Barry and the Clancy brothers.

Third beat and Butler and Court both go left immediately! As piggy in the middle, Miller goes right – a potentially dangerous ploy, leaving the opposition to do their own thing. As they entered the last stages of the beat Court crosses ahead but a few minutes later when they cross again, Miller has sneaked in front. Miller gets to the weather mark first and holds Court off to Mark 4. On the final beat, Miller is much more circumspect, only taking a short hitch to the right to see what Court will do on rounding 4. When Court tacks, so does Miller and the pair sail in close company up the left hand side of the course, with Miller to windward. Butler is “long gone” sailing his own comfortable race. Behind Court and Miller, both Clancy and Power close but not enough to give the “heebie-jeebies” just yet! Miller tacks first for the port lay-line and gets to the weather mark first ahead of Court who is in a slightly more windward slot.  

The last lap is now a race between the Clancys and Power & Barry with the lighter ladies more than holding their own.  They exchange the lead a few times on the top leg, but on the longer leg between 2 and 3 the ladies get into a more secure position and hold off the brothers to the finish.

The fading and northerly shifting breeze now necessitates a change of course but due to the logistics of the harbour, it is not enough to move the weather mark, the committee boat has to move as well, moving inshore towards the gantry for the HSS.  The weather mark, meantime, is now closer to the end of the East Pier. Three laps are set for this second race and at the start the fleet decides that the pin is the place to be. Miller gets his approach wrong, finds he is too early and gybes out from underneath the fleet and works the right hand side of the course. After a single race, the Clancys are back in the groove and they lead the charge to the weather mark followed by Power & Barry, Neil Colin & John, Butler & Oram and Court & Syme. By the time the fleet clear the weather mark, we are treated to the sight of Butler & Oram doing two sets of turns – one set to absolve themselves from an incident with the Clancys and the second for hitting the mark.

Five boats manage to break away from the fleet – Clancys, Power & Barry, Neil & John, Miller and Bradley and Court & Syme.  Behind this bunch, Chambers & McGuire are well placed and of course everyone was aware that Butler & Oram wouldn’t be hanging around the back for any longer than was necessary! Despite the fact that the wind has gone northwards, the right hand side was not paying as much as one would have thought and the fleet consistently worked the middle and left of the course. Clancy and Power were never threatened though their lead did get shortened as the race progressed. Miller gained places off wind to move into third but upwind he lost out to Butler & Oram who worked their way through the fleet.  These places stay as is until the finish with Court & Syme taking the fifth place on the water.

DMYC Frostbites 2015/16: Series 2; Day 6, 6th March R1 R2
Noel Butler & Stephen Oram NYC 15061 1 3
Conor & James Clancy RStGYC 14807 5 1
Cariosa Power & Marie Barry NYC 14854 4 2
Frank Miller & Cormac Bradley DMYC 14713 2 4
Alistair Court & Gordon Syme DMYC 14706 5 5

After nineteen races and five discards, the overall situation is as follows;

DMYC Frostbites 2015/16
1 Noel Butler & Stephen Oram NYC 15061 15pts
2 Frank Miller & Cormac Bradley/Grattan Donnelly DMYC 14713 38pts
3 Alistair Court & Gordon Syme DMYC 14706 59pts
Published in Fireball

#RNLI - Volunteer lifeboat crew from three RNLI stations in Dublin were in Dundrum on Wednesday evening (17 February) for the Irish gala screening of Disney's latest action film The Finest Hours.

Volunteers Gerry Canning and Eoin Kelly from Skerries RNLI, Manus O’Donnell from Howth RNLI and Paul Cummins and Jack Shanahan from Dun Laoghaire RNLI were invited to swap lifeboats for the limelight as they shared the red carpet with guests at the high-action movie premiere at Dundrum Town Centre.

The film tells the incredible true story of the heroic 1952 SS Pendleton rescue mission carried out by the US Coast Guard which is still regarded as one of the greatest sea rescues of all time.

The Finest Hours is based on the acclaimed non-fiction book of the same name by Michael J Tougias and Casey Sherman, which tells the tale of true events that took place 64 years ago this week.

Presented in Digital 3D and IMAX 3D, the film will transport audiences to the heart of the action, creating a fully-immersive cinematic experience on an epic scale.

Owing to the long and close relationship that the RNLI holds with the US Coast Guard, it was highly appropriate for Disney and the RNLI to work together in Ireland, while helping to raise awareness of the charity’s lifesaving work.

The Dublin crew, dressed in full all-weather lifeboat kit, ushered guests to their cinema seats where ahead of the movie, they watched a hard-hitting advertisement from the RNLI’s national drowning prevention campaign, Respect the Water.

The campaign which was first launched last summer warns people that coastlines and waters can be dangerously unpredictable.

The 60 second commercial entitled ‘Breathe’ is shown from the point of view of the casualty, played by an actor. The narrator Andy Serkis invites the audience to hold its breath while watching the film, as the casualty struggles and succumbs to the effects of cold water shock in the time the audience is holding their breath.

The film reveals that, on land, the average person can hold their breath for 45 seconds – but in cold water, they might not last 10.

Speaking following the gala screening, Gerry Canning from Skerries RNLI said: "It was great to see such strong parallels between the bravery, selflessness and community spirit shown by the characters in the film which is mirrored by RNLI lifeboat crew all around Ireland.

"It’s not unusual for us to be woken up by our pagers on a normal week night, so an evening of glitz and glamour was a nice change."

In 2015, RNLI lifeboat crews – who are on-call 24/7, 365 days a year – launched 1,098 times rescuing 1,244 people.

The RNLI has been operating since 1824 and has continually shared expertise, advice and training knowledge with the US Coast Guard for over 100 years.

RNLI volunteers also attended gala screenings of the film in Galway, Cork and Limerick last night.

The Finest Hours will open in Irish cinema today (Friday 19 February). Watch the trailer below.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

Dun Laoghaire RNLI rescued six fishermen in challenging weather conditions this morning after a 25m trawler was disabled off the coast of Dublin.

The volunteer lifeboat crew was requested to launch their all-weather lifeboat at 2.50am following a request by the Irish Coast Guard that a 25m Beam trawler with six on board was in difficulty outside the Kish Bank. The crew had been fishing for scallop when a rope got caught in the vessel's propeller.

The lifeboat under Duty Coxswain David Branigan and with six crew members on board, launched shortly after 3am and made its way to the scene some 12 nautical miles south east of Howth Harbour.

In the darkness, the lifeboat crew were met by difficult weather conditions including a Force 9 strong gale and three to four metres waves.

The crew arrived on scene shortly before 4am where they assessed the situation and checked that the casualty's crew were safe. With no one in immediate danger, the lifeboat crew started working with the fishermen to set up a tow.

The high winds, poor visibility and difficult sea conditions made this task challenging and numerous attempts were made before a towline was successfully established.

In winds gusting up to 50 knots, the lifeboat began the long passage towards Howth Harbour. Despite a slow speed of two to three knots, the towline parted on three occasions along the passage.

Due to the winds and the size of the casualty vessel, Howth RNLI was requested to launch at 9.40am to provide assistance with bringing the vessel into the harbour.

The trawler and her crew were safely returned to shore at 10.40am.

Speaking following the call out, David Branigan, Dun Laoghaire RNLI Duty Coxswain said: 'Our lifeboat crew deserve full credit for their efforts in the early hours of this morning which have seen us spend some eight hours at sea. We launched in the darkness and were met by difficult weather. The high winds and rough seas made this call out particularly challenging especially when establishing and keeping a tow but we persevered and thankfully were able to return the fishermen and their vessel safely to shore.'

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Tagged under

Two volunteers representing continuing generations of lifeboat service with the RNLI will lead the annual Christmas Eve ceremony on Dun Laoghaire’s East Pier next week.

Former crew-member and now Deputy Launching Authority Eddie Totterdell and his son Conor who recently joined the station will lay two wreaths at sea in memory of 15 volunteers that died on service on this day 120 years ago, as well as all lives lost around our coasts in 2015.

The crew of the RNLI lifeboat station at Dun Laoghaire hold this annual ceremony as part of a long-standing local tradition and descendants of the 1895 volunteers are especially welcome as well as anyone who wishes to attend including families.

Both RNLI lifeboats stationed at Dun Laoghaire will launch to carry the wreaths to sea. A joint Guard of Honour will be provided by the Dun Laoghaire Coast Guard Unit and Civil Defence.

The short ceremony will take place at mid-day on Christmas Eve at the lighthouse end of Dun Laoghaire's popular East Pier and will include music, an ecumenical blessing, a contemporary newspaper account of the 1895 tragedy and a piped lament.

The ceremony remembers the lives of the 15 volunteer crew that died when their lifeboat capsized in gale force winds while attempting to rescue those on board the SS Palme that had run aground off Blackrock, Co. Dublin. All lives lost at sea in the past year will also be included in the ceremony.

Relatives of the original 1895 lifeboat crew are expected to be amongst those who will walk the pier. Musician William Byrne and journalist Fergal Keane will be joined by Paul McNally of Dublin Fire Brigade as a lone piper on the East Pier lighthouse battery during the short ceremony that has been facilitated by the Dun Laoghaire Harbour Company. The ecumenical blessing will be followed by the wreath-laying close to the East Pier.

In case of inclement weather, an alternative ceremony will still be held closer to the lifeboat station.

As usual, RNLI volunteer lifeboat crews at 44 stations countrywide will be on call throughout the Christmas and New Year period.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Tagged under

#DunLaoghaire – Users of Dun Laoghaire Harbour can make submissions in support of the proposed amendments to the draft Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council (DLRCoCo) Development Plan 2016-2022 before the closing date of 5pm on Tuesday 22 December.

Campaigners against the proposed cruise liner terminal for the harbour, the oral hearings on which recently concluded, have identified five amendments and policies that require public support. These are:

  • Amendment to SECTION 4: GREEN COUNTY STRATEGY that introduces additional Policy and Section, after Section 4.2.2.11 as follows: Section 4.2.2.12 Policy OSR13 (To protect Dún Laoghaire as an Outstanding Recreational Harbour and Sporting Amenity of National Significance): “It is Council policy to protect and enhance the water based recreational amenity of Dun Laoghaire Harbour and its ability to host national and international competitions. Any commercial shipping proposals within the Harbour should be required to ensure that there is no material detrimental impact upon the water based recreational amenity facilities of the Harbour and its ability to host national and international competitions.”
  • Amendment to SECTION 9: SPECIFIC LOCAL OBJECTIVES to Amend SLO No. 13 as follows: “To facilitate the continued development of the Harbour, ensuring at all times that the historic significance and natural beauty of this public amenity is protected, in advance of the preparation of the Dún Laoghaire and Environs Local Area Plan (LAP). Following the adoption of the Dún Laoghaire and Environs LAP, the future development of the Harbour will thereafter be guided by the principles and objectives of the Plan and that of Policy E14.”
  • Amendment to SECTION 9:SPECIFIC LOCAL OBJECTIVES to Insert additional SLO No. 156 as follows: “In accordance with the National Ports Policy the Council shall, within the relevant planning frameworks, formulate and implement, where appropriate and applicable, a plan for the future development of Dún Laoghaire Harbour and its curtilage as determined by Part 1, subsection 6 of the Third Schedule of the Harbours Act, 1996.”
  • Amendment to SECTION 9: SPECIFIC LOCAL OBJECTIVES to Insert additional SLO No. 157 as follows: “To support and encourage the development of a National Watersports Centre to facilitate training and participation in a varied range of water sports and activities to provide a focus for national and international watersport events. Site appraisal and analysis of the harbour environs to identify the optimum location(s) for such a centre to be expedited as an integral component of the forthcoming Dún Laoghaire and environs LAP.”
  • Amendment to APPENDIX 12: DÚN LAOGHAIRE URBAN FRAMEWORK PLAN Section 3.2.1 Central Harbour Area to add new first sentence to the first paragraph of this section as follows: “It will be an objective of this Plan to preserve the integrity, natural beauty and historical significance of the Harbour by protecting this central area from any cruise berth that would allow cruise ships longer than 250m to come directly into the harbour. This plan will support and encourage the niche market of smaller cruise ships."

Submissions can be made by three ways: via email, via letter or by consultation on the DLRCoCo website.

Emails to [email protected] should be sent with the subject subject line 'Submission on Proposed Amendments to Draft County Development Plan 2016 - 2022'. The text of the email/letter should include your name, your address and the following text:

I wish to support the following amendments to the Draft County Development Plan 2016-2022

1. Section 4: GREEN COUNTY STRATEGY
To lntroduce additional Policy and Section, after Section 4.2.2.ll as follows:
Section 4.2.2.12 Policy OSR 13
To protect Dun Laoghalre as an Outstanding Recreational Harbour and Sporting Amenity of National Significance.

2. SECTION 9: SPECIFIC LOCAL OBJECTIVES
To amend SLO No. 13
To insert additional SLO No. 156
To insert additional SLO No. 157

3 APPENDIX 12: DUN LAOGHAIRE URBAN FRAMEWORK PLAN
Section 3.2.1 Central Harbour Area.
To add a new first sentence to the first paragraph of this section

Letters should be addressed to:

Senior Executive Officer,
Planning & Organisational Innovation Department,
Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council,
County Hall,
Marine Road,
Dun Laoghaire

Published in Dublin Bay

#CruiseBerth - The Dun Laoghaire Combined Clubs (DLCC) are seeking donations from members to cover some €100,000 in legal costs associated with participation in the oral hearing over the proposed cruise liner terminal for Dun Laoghaire Harbour.

The hearings hosted by An Bord Pleanála, which began on 14 October, ran 10 days over the expected seven-day duration and saw some heated exchanges regarding the controversial plans.

Costs remained broadly in line with original predictions, according to a waterfront Commodore, one of the six member clubs of the DLCC.

However, as a letter of appeal from DLCC convenor Liam Owens underlines, "it was always understood that the clubs had neither the resources nor the mandate to commit to this undertaking" alone, particularly after the four main clubs covered the €20,000 cost of the original objection.

While an application for full costs has been submitted to An Bord Pleanála, it may not be granted – making an appeal for contributions from all harbour users all the more necessary.

Owens writes: "I want you to demonstrate your appreciation by sending a payment to the DLCC now for whatever you can afford. Some individuals among the sailing community have already donated significant sums.

"I believe we have achieved something very significant and I know you love your harbour," he adds

An Bord Pleanála's decision on the matter is due next month.

Published in Cruise Liners

#IrishHarbours - Concerns expressed by a number of readers to Afloat.ie over fishing activity in Dun Laoghaire's inner harbour have been assuaged by the Dun Laoghaire Harbour Company.

Two trawlers were spotted around noon last Friday (4 December) dragging a full-sized fishing net between them around the inner harbour.

But Dun Laoghaire's acting harbour master Simon Coate has since confirmed to Afloat.ie that the boats in question were fishing with permission for sprat.

Coate added that the forage fish species comes into the harbour in large numbers on a regular basis at this time of year.

Harbour concerns of a different kind have been heard in Howth, with local TD Tommy Broughan taking the Department of the Marine to task over the lack of any timetable or specific funding for dredging the harbour area - where local yacht club users have found conditions getting worse.

In a post on his website, Deputy Broughan said he was "contacted by members of the Howth Harbour Users Action Group who are very concerned about the build-up of silt in the harbour and the damaging effect this is having on all aspects of this important harbour.

"Howth Harbour has not been dredged for decades. I understand it was last dredged in 1981 or 1982 and I do not recall a dredging programme in the harbour in many years representing the area.

"The action group reports that this neglect has led to almost 6ft of silt building up in the harbour and an operational crisis for all the fishing and leisure craft which use it."

While welcoming investment in infrastructural works at the fishery harbour centre, Deputy Broughan underlines that it is "critical that the harbour does not become unworkable as a result of the build-up of silt".

Read more on this story HERE.

Published in Irish Harbours

Week 3 of the DMYC Frostbites in Dun Laoghaire Harbour showed a more friendly (wind wise), but less friendly (temperature wise) forecast, this led to many of the RS fleet finally opening their frostbite series despite there being 3 races held already,

The RS fleet was part of over 60 dinghies spread over 4 classes, that raced on Sunday, the harbour was full to the brim, with 20+ RS Fevas doing their Sunday coaching, numerous Oppie and laser squads out training, along with college sailors team racing.

Two races was the order of the day, and a nice 15knots gusting 18 from a cold northwesterly direction greeted the fleet as they made their way to the start area,

There were plenty of new faces on the water, with 2 x Olympian Gerbil Owens making his first outing in his new RS200, crewed by Beijing 2008 Olympic crew Phil Lawton, also new to the class were Maeve Rafferty and Rosanna Cassidy who were joined by Sean and Heather Craig, Greystones pairing of Frank O'Rourke and Sarah Byrne and Marty O'Leary and Rachel Williamson also braved the cold to start their series.

12 RS's made it to the startline. Race 1 saw the fleet split to both sides of the harbour with the left coming out in front, Alexander Rumball lead the fleet around the windward mark followed closely by Sean and Heather Craig,

The course for race 1 was 4 laps of the trapezoid, giving two great planing reaches and one very square downwind which meant lots of place changes, after the four sprint like laps which were completed in about 33 minutes, it was Marty and Rachel who found some form later in the race to claim victory, with Sean and Heather second and Emmet and James Ryan third. It was all very close with only 28 seconds between 2nd place and Frank and Sarah in 6th place.

Race two saw a fairly sizeable pin end bias and a few boats not naming any names attempted to port tack the fleet, the results were not pretty. The course was to be 3 laps this time, by the windward mark, it was all very close again with Emmet and James taking an early lead, at the leeward mark it was Frank and Sarah who got the early gybe into the lead, by the top of the 2nd beat someone seemed to press that switch that makes all RS 200s turn into magnets and instantly want to join together, this time with Marty and Rachel managing to cause a pile up at the windward mark slowing just about everyone down, including some Sunday walkers on the pier. After unwrapping themselves from the windward mark and taking a penalty turn they rejoined the race. It was much more of the same for the remaining lap and a half with numerous place swapping. Frank and Sarah had managed to break away from the mayhem behind and claim 1st, closely followed by Emmet and James in 2nd and Marty and Rach managed to claw back to 3rd just seconds ahead Sean and Heather, who it turned out were OCS, leaving Gerbil and Phil to take 4th.

The Weekly Mugs went to Marty and Rach for Race 1 and Frank and Sarah for race 2

Published in RS Sailing

Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council is the richest local authority in the country. According to a Sunday Times report DLRCoCo has €130m in the bank. 

As of June 30 DLRCoCo had €128.6m in bank investments, 1.4m on deposit and €310,129 in cash.

Under new ports legislation DLRCoCo is to assume control of the town's harbour, currently the subject of an An Bord Pleanala Oral Hearing into a proposed cruise liner berth. Last month Dun Laoghaire Councillors included in the County Development Plan that mega cruise ships would not be allowed in the harbour, Ireland's biggest recreational sailing centre.

 

 

Published in Dublin Bay
Tagged under
Page 10 of 45

William M Nixon has been writing about sailing in Ireland and internationally for many years, with his work appearing in leading sailing publications on both sides of the Atlantic. He has been a regular sailing columnist for four decades with national newspapers in Dublin, and has had several sailing books published in Ireland, the UK, and the US. An active sailor, he has owned a number of boats ranging from a Mirror dinghy to a Contessa 35 cruiser-racer, and has been directly involved in building and campaigning two offshore racers. His cruising experience ranges from Iceland to Spain as well as the Caribbean and the Mediterranean, and he has raced three times in both the Fastnet and Round Ireland Races, in addition to sailing on two round Ireland records. A member for ten years of the Council of the Irish Yachting Association (now the Irish Sailing Association), he has been writing for, and at times editing, Ireland's national sailing magazine since its earliest version more than forty years ago

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