Displaying items by tag: Skerries
Saving Lives at Sea, showcasing the lifesaving work of the RNLI, starts next Wednesday 16 August at 8pm on BBC Two.
The 12-part series features real rescues carried out by the charity’s lifeboat crews around Ireland and the UK, and gives a unique insight into the lives of the charity’s volunteer lifeboat crew members, who rescue thousands of people and save hundreds of lives around our coastline every year.
Castletownbere will be in episode three, as the crew rescue a lone sailor in storm conditions and rescue two fishermen from a boat that sinks.
Saving Lives at Sea features real-life rescue footage accompanied by heart-warming and emotive testimonials from the crew and the people they rescue.
The series has been filmed over the past year, with lifeboat crews using RNLI and special cameras and welcoming filmmakers into their day-to-day life. Rescues from the RNLI’s archives are also revisited.
Last year alone, RNLI lifeboats in Ireland launched 1,136 times rescuing 1,649 people.
Saving Lives at Sea will be broadcast weekly from Wednesday 16 August to Wednesday 1 November on BBC Two at 8pm. The series is made for the BBC by Blast! Films.
Tomorrow, Saturday the 5th of August will see the 2017 Mermaid National Championship kick off with registration and a practice race at Skerries Sailing Club for what is the 85th anniversary year for the class.
An online entry form encouraging competitors to register for the event in advance saw a fantastic 27 entries sign up from six different clubs including Rush Sailing Club, Foynes Yacht Club, Royal Irish Yacht Club, National Yacht Club, Clontarf Yacht and Boat Club and Skerries Sailing Club. A number of past, well-known faces to the class are making a welcome return including past National Champion Mark Boylan on 177, This Is It and Andrew Frazer on 174, Golden Chevrons among others. New to the class include Darach Dinneen on 36 Elizabeth, Del Brennan on 173 Jubilee and number 4 Ferga from Clontarf Yacht and Boat Club. It is a very welcome return of Mermaids from Clontarf to the fleet. This year, not one, but two Mermaids came back to Clontarf (number 4 Ferga and Ciaran Hynes’ number 17 Maeve) through a fantastic initiative and drive from Clontarf Yacht and Boat Club, no doubt they will get a very warm reception at this year’s main event.
With a practice race tomorrow to get everyone tuned up and ready, the real Championship racing starts on Sunday the 6th when a 10 am briefing will kick everything off. Racing covers a full 6 days and runs right through to Friday the 11th of August with a total of 10 Championship races planned as well as one Crew’s race (where one of the crew helms). Shoreside entertainment includes an RNLI quiz at 8pm on Tuesday the 8th as well as the famous ‘Shay’s Alternative Prize Giving’ on Thursday the 10th also starting at 8pm at Skerries Sailing Club. The final Friday night on the 11th will see the new National Champion crowned in and at this stage with so many competitive boats in the fleet it’s very difficult to predict who this will be. Along with daily prizes for 1st place helm and crew, 1st place Daphne helm and crew and 1st place Designer helm and crew there will also be daily raffles hosted by the Mermaid Sailing Association. These raffles are thanks to the MSA’s generous sponsors including UK McWilliams Sailmakers, Dubarry of Ireland, North Sails and Union Chandlery and all competitors will be included in daily draws for some great prizes.
The forecast which had been giving very light winds seems to be picking up and at the moment it’s looking good for the scheduled racing (although we all know how quickly that can change!). Keep an eye out for further update articles on Afloat.ie as the Championship progresses and best of luck to all taking part.
Last weekend saw the annual Skerries Regatta take place over Saturday and Sunday the 15th and 16th of July. With an ambitious six races planned (3 per day), an impressive fleet of 18 Mermaids took to the water, completing 5 races in total. The Regatta offered a variety of conditions and consistency was key for the top winners.
With the Mermaid’s annual National Championship being hosted by Skerries Sailing Club this year from the 5th to the 11th of August, it’s not surprising that the turnout was so good as many availed of this perfect opportunity to get some invaluable practice in for the main event.
Saturday the 15th of July saw some competitors struggle to make it out to the starting area with a low tide that wasn’t filling in fast enough making it very difficult for a number of boats to launch, as a result some Mermaids missed the first race. Competitors were met with a strong, fresh breeze and relatively flat seas as they made their way out to the race area promising for some excellent conditions. Sharing the course were the Fireballs that zoomed around in their element racing for their Leinster Championship (see Fireball report here) as well as some yachts and various dinghies and e-boats. The first race got off to a clear start on schedule and it seemed that those that played the middle of the beat and then banked out to the right came out on top. Darragh Mc Cormack on 188 Innocence took 1st place with Sam Shiels on 189 Azeezy in 2nd and Vincent Mc Cormack on 119, Three Chevrons finishing 3rd.
Following the first race, the breeze picked up considerably and conditions were much more demanding for the second race of the day. The telltale sign was that, bar the top 3 boats, no other Mermaids flew their spinnakers once they had rounded the first windward mark. Frankie Browne on 135 Cara II was having a spectacular race and was lying 2nd, hot on Darragh Mc Cormack’s heels. Eye witnesses claimed the speed Frankie got up to on one of the reaches was the closest a Mermaid had ever come to foiling! The rush of it all must have went to his head as despite the breeze continuing to build on the next leg, Frankie again threw up the kite but unfortunately took a slip and ended up overboard knocking him out of Race 2! Three Chevrons who were right behind Frankie took up the challenge of catching Darragh Mc Cormack and a fantastic race between Uncle and nephew ensued. Three Chevrons managed to climb into the lead on the beat of the last triangle and under the impression that Darragh would most certainly be putting up the kite to get back into 1st place, Vincent threw his up without question (despite the breeze now being well up in the 20’s gusting higher). A bad squall at bad timing was one step too far for Three Chevrons and their 7 year old mast had had enough! A pretty clean break stopped the speed-hungry Three Chevrons in their tracks and Darragh went on to secure another bullet. 123 Vee helmed by Jim Carthy snatched up the 2nd place spot and a fantastic race out of up-and-coming Paul Browne on 146 Fugitive saw him finish in 3rd for what was a very demanding race to even finish. With the wind building and 2 mermaids now with broken masts, the Race Officer made the wise decision to call it a day and the fleet headed back to the club for a fantastic BBQ spread enjoyed on the sunny balcony overlooking the harbour.
Sunday the 16th saw somewhat calmer conditions but still with a great breeze for racing with lovely flat seas and plenty of sunshine. A strong fleet of Mermaids headed out for an 11am start and managed to get all 3 races in. Darragh Mc Cormack who was leading overall got another bullet in race 1 but it was closer racing with some great displays from the likes of Ross Galbraith on 185 who finished 2nd and reigning National Champion Sam Shiels who finished 3rd. Indeed Sam seemed to have found his rhythm as he went on to get 2 firsts in the remaining 2 races of the day pushing him up to finish 2nd overall. The racing in the fleet seems to have a great calibre of competition this year with a number of strong boats always appearing in the top 5 and plenty of others climbing the ranks so the Nationals should be very interesting to see who will claim the coveted title.
Having already won the Mermaid Munster title, ICRA Class 4 in both IRC and Echo on his J24 Stouche as well as the J24 Southern's, Darragh Mc Cormack from Foynes Yacht Club continued his winning streak with his Mermaid 188 Innocence finishing 1st overall at this year’s Skerries Regatta. All of these wins are hard fought and this event was no different, reigning National Champion and local boat, 189 Azeezy helmed by Sam Shiels finished 2nd place overall with only 2 additional series points behind Darragh. Third place overall went to 123 Vee helmed by Jim Carthy and 4th place overall went to 186 Gentoo helmed by Brian Mc Nally. The event overall was a great warm-up for the fleet and now it’s all eyes on the Nationals with volunteers, competitors and everyone in between busy in preparations for the 5th of August.
#RNLI - Skerries RNLI launched on Wednesday afternoon (5 July) after the coastguard received a report from lifeguards on Rush beach of swimmers in difficulty some 500 metres off shore and at risk of being pulled out to sea.
The Skerries lifeboat launched with volunteer David Knight at the helm and crewed by Ian Guildea, AJ Hughes and JP Tanner to check on the group.
The crew made their way towards Rush and began a search of the area. After stopping to speak to a group of kayakers, it became apparent that the lifeguards on the beach had mistaken them for a group of swimmers.
Once it was established that there was nobody in danger, the lifeboat was stood down and returned to Skerries.
Speaking about the callout, Skerries RNLI lifeboat press officer Gerry Canning said: “In this case it was a false alarm with good intent. But we would remind everyone, if you see someone in trouble in the water, dial 999 and ask for the coastguard.”
Shortly after 3pm on Sunday afternoon, Dublin Coast Guard received reports that a number of people were in the water having been cut off by the rising tide.
Skerries RNLI were tasked and the volunteers launched their Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat with Conor Walsh at the helm and crewed by Stephen Crowley, Steven Johnston and Peter Kennedy.
The lifeboat was on scene within a matter of minutes and immediately located a man and woman struggling to make their way ashore.
The man was chest deep in water while the woman was holding on to his shoulders and kicking her legs to stay afloat.
They were assisted into the lifeboat where the crew began first aid assessments and protected them from the elements.
Once it was established that all others in their group had made it safely ashore, the lifeboat brought the man and woman back to the station where they were further assessed.
They were cold from having been in the water for a length of time, but were otherwise unharmed. After a period of monitoring, they left the station safe and well.
The previous afternoon, Skerries RNLI were tasked by Dublin Coast guard around 4.30pm after a member of the public reported a child in an inflatable boat drifting out to sea near Gormanston.
The lifeboat was launched and proceeded to make their way to the location given. However, while they were en route they received an update that some swimmers in the area had managed to help the child ashore and the lifeboat was stood down.
Late on Sunday evening, the pagers sounded for the third time in two days, after a call was received by Dublin Coast Guard informing them that a man in a distressed state had entered the water in Rush.
However, before the lifeboat could be put to sea our volunteers were stood down as the man had been safely assisted ashore.
Speaking about the callouts, Skerries RNLI lifeboat press officer Gerry Canning said: “We’ve been enjoying some fantastic weather lately. This means we may have more people making the most of our coastline.
“We’d encourage anyone visiting the area to check the local tides and always be aware of their surroundings and the dangers they might present.”
The lifeboat — with helm David Knight and crew Stephen Crowley, AJ Hughes and JP Tanner — proceeded towards Balbriggan Harbour, where they soon spotted a fishing trawler with another fishing vessel alongside and went to investigate.
The fishing trawler had suffered a serious electrical problem and lost all power, lowering anchor and firing a flare to signal that they required help. The second fishing vessel had responded to the distress call and come to their assistance.
With the low tide making entrance to Balbriggan Harbour difficult, the broken-down trawler was taken under tow by the lifeboat and brought to the safety of Skerries Harbour.
Speaking after the callout, Skerries RNLI lifeboat press officer Gerry Canning said: “It doesn’t matter how prepared you are, things can go wrong at sea. Thankfully they were carrying flares and didn’t hesitate to use them to raise the alarm.
“We’d also like to say well done to the other vessel that responded immediately to the call for help.”
The incident came just days after a fishing vessel sank off Skerries, taking the life of one of its two crew, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.
#MCIB - The Marine Casualty Investigation Board (MCIB) will this week begin its inquiry into the sinking of a fishing vessel off Skerries last Friday (26 May) that claimed the life of a local fisherman, according to The Irish Times.
His crew mate and uncle Keith McAllister was rescued at the scene — and it’s expected that the MCIB will seek an interview this week regarding the circumstances of how their vessel sank while the pair were fishing for razor clams in Force 4 winds.
Earlier this year the five-strong crew of a razor clam vessel fishing in similar conditions were rescued off the nearby Balbriggan coast after their trawler ran aground.
The MCIB previously concluded that dredge fishing for razor clams carries a “high risk” of fouling gear or snagging heavy objects, in its report on the capsize of a fishing boat in Rosslare Harbour in 2015.
Dublin Coast Guard tasked Skerries RNLI shortly after 12.30pm after receiving a call from a motor boat that was having difficulty getting their engine to start.
The lifeboat was launched with volunteer Philip Ferguson at the helm and crewed by Paddy Dillon, Steven Johnson and JP Tanner.
They proceeded on a course to Rockabill, and once on scene they located a 5m motor boat with two men on board that had become entangled in a lobster pot.
Following some troubleshooting advice from the lifeboat helm, a former RNLI mechanic, the men managed to successfully restart the engine. The lifeboat then stood by while they tested that everything was running smoothly.
With the men happy to be on their way again, the lifeboat returned to base and was made ready for the next call out.
Lifeboat press officer Gerry Canning said: “Sometimes, even though you are fully prepared you can just be unlucky. In this case their luck changed quickly as Philip used his experience to get them moving again. Our volunteers are always ready to help in whatever way they can.”
Dublin Coast Guard tasked Skerries RNLI shortly after 1pm after receiving a 999 call from a member of the public who was concerned about a small motor boat that had gone to sea in the early hours of the morning.
There were three men on board the boat, and with the sea conditions changing and the wind increasing, there were concerns for their safety.
The Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat Louis Simson was launched with Joe May at the helm and with crew members Stephen Crowley, Paddy Dillon and Jack Keane.
As the lifeboat made its way towards Rush Harbour where the men had been seen launching, they received a call from Eoin Grimes, a volunteer helm, who was at sea on board his on boat and had spotted a vessel fitting the description near Lambay Island.
Grimes soon after confirmed that the vessel was still in the area and located at the North Cardinal mark off Lambay.
The lifeboat made its way directly to the position indicated and spoke to the men on board the vessel. They agreed that the conditions had changed significantly and were going to make for the shore. The lifeboat stood by but after a few minutes, it became apparent that they were not making any progress under their own power.
The three men were taken on board the lifeboat and their boat was taken under tow for a safe return to Rush Harbour.
Speaking after the callout, Skerries RNLI lifeboat press officer Gerry Canning said: “We would encourage anyone going to sea to always check the forecast, wear lifejackets, carry a means of calling for help and let somebody on shore know when you expect to return.”
Dublin Coast Guard tasked Skerries RNLI shortly before noon after receiving an emergency call from a member of the public who had spotted a swimmer struggling to make any progress against the tide at the island off Skerries.
Volunteers launched the Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat Louis Simson, with David Knight at the helm and crew Philip Ferguson, Joe May and Laura Boylan.
The lifeboat proceeded to the area indicated by the caller, where an Irish Coast Guard helicopter had also arrived on scene. They took the male casualty on board the lifeboat, protected him from the elements, and began first aid assessments as they made their way back to the station.
The casualty had swallowed seawater during his efforts to swim to shore and as a result, on the advice of the crew, he was transferred by ambulance to hospital for further assessment.
Speaking after the callout, Skerries RNLI lifeboat press office Gerry Canning said: “We’ve had a couple of tidal-related incidents in the last few days. We’d just like to remind people that the strength and height of the tide varies throughout the month.
“We would strongly recommend checking tide tables before engaging in any activity on or near the sea.”