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Displaying items by tag: Irish Coast Guard

#Coastguard - Greenore Coast Guard congratulate their retiring officer in chief James Larkin, who is stepping down after 21 years in the post.

Larkin now takes up a full-time role as section manager for the Irish Coast Guard’s Eastern Region.

He is succeeded at the Co Louth coastguard station by George Campbell, who along with deputy OIC Shay Gormley presented Larkin with a canvas on behalf of all Greenore Coast Guard volunteers.

Published in Coastguard

#Rescue - A lone sailor whose yacht ran aground on Scariff Bay over the weekend had difficulties again just hours after his rescue.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, Lough Derg  RNLI launched its lifeboat on Saturday evening (14 April) to assist the 30ft yacht after it had left its mooring at Mountshannon Harbour.

The Killaloe unit of the Irish Coast Guard was also on scene, helping to remove the yacht from a sandy bank and returning it to Mountshannon.

But the evening did not end there, as BreakingNews.ie reports, as the same yacht required coastguard assistance just a few hours later.

It emerged that the sailor was attempting to tie up his vessel at an anchor point in deeper water when it grounded in the shallows once more, and the coastguard was alerted by a concerned onlooker around 11.30pm.

The yacht was once again towed to Mountshannon Harbour and the coastguard unit returned to base at 1.30am.

Published in Rescue

#Rescue116 - The 43rd annual People of the Year awards tomorrow night (Sunday 15 April) will see honours go to the Irish Coast Guard as a tribute to the crew of Rescue 116, as BreakingNews.ie reports.

In addition, the people of Erris in Co Mayo will be noted for their contributions to the search and rescue operation following the tragic loss of the helicopter’s four crew — Capt Dara Fitzpatrick, Capt Mark Duffy, Paul Ormsby and Ciarán Smith — on 14 March 2017.

Caitríona Lucas, the coastguard volunteer who died in a search operation off Kilkee a few months prior, will also be remembered on the evening, broadcast live on RTÉ One tomorrow from 9.30pm.

“The selfless actions of those who put their lives on the line, for the safety of others, means Caitríona, Dara, Ciáran, Mark and Paul will remain an inspiration to us all,” said Gerard O’Flynn, search and rescue operations manager with the Irish Coast Guard.

All five are set to feature in a new commemorative stamp colllection next year, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.

Published in Coastguard

#Galway - A body was found this morning (Friday 13 April) in the search for a swimmer missing off Salthill in Galway since yesterday.

The Irish Coast Guard’s Shannon-based helicopter Rescue 115 spotted the body on the seabed in shallow water offshore around 10.15am this morning as part of the ongoing search operation.

The body was recovered into Galway RNLI’s inshore lifeboat for transfer to Galway University Hospital. Pending formal identification, the search will be stood down. 

Search units involved included An Garda Síochána and Civil Defence teams, and volunteer divers provide by the Irish Underwater Council.

Published in Galway Harbour

The Irish Mirror reports that a man has died after a fishing boat capsized off the Mayo coast yesterday afternoon (Tuesday 10 April).

It’s understood that the deceased was a man in his 50s from North Mayo. He was one of three men recovered from a life raft some 16 miles off Eagle Island after their vessel sank.

Ballyglass RNLI and the Irish Coast Guard’s Sligo-based helicopter Rescue 118 were immediately tasked to search the area when a Mayday broadcast was picked up shortly after 12.30pm.

Rescue 118 spotted flares less than an hour later and proceeded to airlift the casualties for transfer to Sligo University Hospital.

Published in News Update

#Rescue - A fishing trawler in distress off the Irish coast has been found after concerns that it had sunk, as the Irish Examiner reports.

Contact was lost with the 22m Ocean Pioneer after it was left without power some 150km off Kerry on Tuesday (27 March), and crew activated the vessel’s EPIRB emergency beacon to attract the attention of the coastguard.

The signal was picked up by the Irish Coast Guard, which dispatched the Shannon-based helicopter Rescue 115 to the trawler’s last known location.

Not long after, the fishing boat was found with its seven crew unharmed, but the Naval Service vessel LÉ William Butler Yeats was sent to guard the trawler overnight as it presented a risk to over vessels without its lights.

The Irish Examiner has more on the story HERE.

Published in Rescue
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#Coastguard - Next year’s commemorative stamp programme from An Post will feature a tribute to the four coastguard crew lost in the Rescue 116 tragedy one year ago.

RTÉ News reports that Caitriona Lucas, the coastguard volunteer who died during a rescue mission in September 2016, will be included as part of a series paying tribute to the work of the Irish Coast Guard.

Among other stamps due in 2019 will be one to mark 100 years since the first non-stop transatlantic flight from Newfoundland to Galway by British aviators Alcock and Brown.

Published in Coastguard

#Rescue116 - The Air Accident Investigation Unit has called for “a thorough review of search and rescue aviation operations in Ireland” in the wake of the Rescue 116 tragedy one year ago.

Four Irish Coast Guard crew — Capt Dara Fitzpatrick, Capt Mark Duffy, winch operator Paul Ormsby and winchman Ciaran Smith — were lost when their Sikorsky S-92A helicopter went down at Black Rock island, off Blacksod in Co Mayo, in the early hours of 14 March 2017.

The AAIU  confirmed in January that due to the “depth and breadth” of its investigation into the incident, a final report would not be completed within the first year, and progress would be detailed in an interim statement.

Published on Friday (16 March) days after commemorations in Mayo for the four Rescue 116 crew, this statement called on the Minister for Transport to conduct “a thorough review” of air-based SAR “to ensure that there are appropriate processes, resources and personnel in place to provide effective, continuous, comprehensive and independent oversight of all aspects of these operations.”

The statement also highlighted an issue with the “coarseness” of position data recorded by the helicopter’s flight data recorder, suggesting upgrades or modifications “to ensure that the latitude and longitude information recorded on the Flight Data Recorder reflects the most accurate position information available during all flight regimes and mission profiles.”

And it urged coastguard helicopter operator CHC Ireland to conduct an internal review of its safety management systems, or SMS, after the investigation raised “concerns regarding its efficacy”.
Interim safety recommendations included in last April’s preliminary report remain open, the AAIU says.

Minister for Transport Shane Ross welcomed the publication of the AAIU interim statement on Friday, and said he has asked his department to ensure that the recommended review of SAR aviation operations “is instigated without delay”.

“The aim of this review will be to ensure that our arrangements in this regard are sufficiently robust and measure up to international best practice models,” Minister Ross added.

Noting the length of the investigation, the minister said it was “important to emphasise” that the AAIU’s work remains in progress.

“Whilst I understand the ongoing public interest in this matter, it is vital that the AAIU is given the time and space to complete its work and report on its findings,” he said. “As such, I am not in position to comment further on the issues surrounding it.”

Published in Coastguard

#Rescue116 - Today, Wednesday 14 March, marks one year since the Rescue 116 tragedy off Co Mayo.

Relatives of the four Irish Coast Guard crew lost in the crash attended a midnight vigil in Blacksod, as The Irish Times reports.

More than 100 people joined the local community in paying tribute to Capt Dara Fitzpatrick, Capt Mark Duffy, winch operator Paul Ormsby and winchman Ciaran Smith, the latter two of whom remain missing.

Events will continue today with a Mass in Tirraunt and the laying of wreaths by the Naval Service’s LÉ Niamh and Irish Lights vessel Granuaile. The Irish Times has more HERE.

Published in Coastguard

#Coastguard - Secondary school students taking part in this week’s BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition at the RSD have identified a list of errors in navigational charts used by the Irish Coast Guard’s helicopter crews.

As the Irish Independent reports, pupils from Pobalscoil Neasáin in Baldoyle, Co Dublin found that official air charts used by the coastguard had inaccurate locations for famous landmarks including Fastnet Rock and Skellig Michael.

At the same time as the Irish Aviation Authority appeals to SAR pilots to assist in making corrections to its latest charts, the second-year students flagged the mistakes in the course of their research for a prototype helicopter-mounted ultrasonic sensor.

The ‘EchoCopter’ would the terrain of the aircraft’s flight path in real time, providing supplementary data alongside the built-in EGPWS system.

It’s hoped that such a device might help avoid further tragedies such as the Rescue 116 crash last March, which took the lives of four experienced coastguard SAR crew.

The Irish Independent has more on the story HERE.

Published in Coastguard
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