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Displaying items by tag: Fethard

Volunteer lifeboat crew at Fethard RNLI were requested to launch their lifeboat by the Irish Coast Guard yesterday afternoon (Saturday 17 July) at 5.34 pm, to assist a person in difficulties on their jet ski.

The crew launched the D-Class lifeboat Naomh Dubhán on the beach under Duncannon Fort. Duncannon beach lifeguards and Rescue 117 Helicopter were also involved in the rescue.

The conditions were calm with a light breeze on the hottest day of the year.

As the lifeboat proceeded to the area where the jet ski was located, it was established from communications with the Irish Coast Guard that the male was assisted ashore by the lifeguard and locals and was receiving casualty care at Duncannon Harbour. Fethard lifeboat crew recovered the beached jet ski, towing it into the harbour and then rendered assistance with the care of the casualty.

Speaking about the incident Fethard RNLI Volunteer Helm John Colfer said, "It was a very positive outcome showing the teamwork achieved by the lifeguards, the Coast Guard helicopter and ourselves."

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Fethard RNLI commemorated an important anniversary on Saturday (10 July 2021). It was 25 years to the exact day (10 July 1996) that the RNLI re-established a lifeboat station at Fethard-On-Sea, following an absence of 82 years. The milestone was marked by a solemn ceremony at sea, where current lifeboat crew laid a wreath to remember all those involved with the station, who had passed away over the last 25 years.

The anniversary was originally to involve a large-scale exercise at sea, viewed by the public from Baginbun beach and involving Fethard RNLI, Kilmore Quay RNLI, Dunmore East RNLI and the Irish Coast Guard. Unfortunately, the display was postponed due to the ongoing restrictions for Covid and it is now planned to take place on Sunday the 12 September.

Fethard RNLI has a rich history in the Institution. A previous RNLI lifeboat based in Fethard, called the Helen Blake, was lost and 9 of her 14 crew on 20 February 1914. The station was then closed, and it was not known if a lifeboat would ever again be on service in the area. However, the local community came together years later to raise the funds needed to establish a new station. After a lot of hard work and determination, their dream of having a Lifeboat was realised.

That same community spirit was also present in 2016 when the community funded the station’s current lifeboat the Naomh Dubhan.

Commenting on the 25th anniversary, Fethard RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager Walter Foley said, ‘All of us involved with Fethard RNLI would like to sincerely thank our wonderful community who have supported this lifeboat station for the past 25 years. There are so many people involved with our station and we appreciate every one of them and the work they do.’

‘Having a lifeboat station re-established after suffering such a loss as we did in 1914 is an incredible achievement. In the intervening years our community decided they wanted their lifeboat back and campaigned and raised the funds necessary to return one to the area. There is a special bond between Fethard RNLI, and its community and it is the reason why we are still going strong today.’

An official event to mark the 25th anniversary of the reopening of Fethard RNLI is due to take place on Baginbun beach on Sunday 12 September.

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Volunteer lifeboat crew at Fethard RNLI were requested to launch their lifeboat by the Irish Coast Guard yesterday morning (Thursday 1 July) at 11.20 am, to assess the situation where a fisherman reported difficulties with his boat’s outboard engine.

Fethard RNLI’s inshore lifeboat was launched and arrived on scene at Loughlin’s Hill, east of the Hook Peninsula, where the helm and crew began to assess the situation prior to undertaking a tow.

The weather was fine, with good visibility and a Force 2-3 south-westerly wind. The fisherman’s anchor on his 18ft open punt was ineffective and he was drifting towards the rocks. The decision was made to undertake a tow as it was necessary and the safest way to assist the casualty. The vessel was returned to the safety of the nearest port at Fethard Harbour.

Commenting on the call out Pat Wallace, Fethard RNLI Deputy Launching Authority said: ‘The fisherman did the absolute right thing by raising the alarm before things got out of hand. This call out highlights the importance of carrying a means of calling for help and having it at hand as a means to contact someone for help.’

Yesterday’s launch also marked the first call out for one of Fethard RNLI’s new crew members, Nadia Blanchfield. Nadia, who has undergone 18 months of training at sea, when Covid-19 regulations allowed, took part in yesterday’s rescue.

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Fethard RNLI has received a generous €37,000 donation from Integer New Ross this week, after the company’s staff and management chose the lifeboat station as its charity of the year.

Volunteers at Fethard RNLI were delighted to be considered and chosen as Integer’s charity of the year in 2020 and have been overwhelmed by the amount raised.

Receiving the funds raised from Seamus Hamilton of Integer New Ross, Sarah Bates, from Fethard RNLI’s fundraising branch said: ‘We would like to express our sincere gratitude to all the staff at Integer. As a charity, Fethard RNLI totally depends on the goodwill of the public to provide our lifesaving service. This significant donation will continue to help us save lives at sea on the Hook Peninsula and on the River Barrow up to New Ross.

‘These funds will now go towards providing the essential kit our volunteer crew needs to do their lifesaving work and to helping maintain our lifeboat and lifesaving equipment. The funds will also support our crews training. In the last two weeks alone, 12 volunteers undertook training and were awarded with casualty care certificates.’

Walter Foley, Fethard RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager added: ‘Our station has remained operational throughout the pandemic and our volunteers have continued to be on call adhering to additional safety protocols including wearing extra PPE. We are so grateful for this extraordinary donation from all at Integer during a year when our own traditional fundraising activities had to cease due to Covid-19 restrictions. We would like to thank all the staff for their hard work fundraising and their generosity.’

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Volunteer lifeboat crew at Fethard RNLI were requested by the Irish Coast Guard on Sunday evening (28 February) at 5.15 pm to reports of three walkers who had become cut off by the incoming tide with no way of getting to safety. The alarm was raised by a concerned resident of Bannow Island who knew the area well and could see the walkers were in difficulty.

Fethard RNLI’s inshore lifeboat was launched and arrived at Cocklestrand, west of Bannow Island at 5.35 pm. The Kilmore Quay Coast Guard unit was also tasked. Once on scene, the lifeboat crew began the search for the stranded walkers. An extensive search of the north and south shoreline was carried out, but the walkers were nowhere to be seen and had made their own way to safety.

Commenting on the call out Mark Brennan, Fethard RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer said: ‘The member of the public did absolutely the right thing, reporting someone in difficulty. It is always better to be safe than sorry and we would much rather launch and find nothing than not launch at all, safety is always our priority. People are keen to exercise outside within government guidelines and we live in a beautiful area with lots of access to the coast. However, we would advise people to keep an eye on their surroundings, in particular, incoming tides and also to watch their footing on the shoreline. Always check the tide times and heights and keep a lookout for incoming tide. Use tide timetables or a tidal prediction app. Make sure you have enough time to return safely. If in doubt, seek local advice.

‘Fethard RNLI remain on call and fully operational during the Covid-19 pandemic. There is no crew training or exercises taking place at the moment, but we are here if people need us.’

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Fethard RNLI responded to two incidents in a 24-hour period over the weekend after two vessels, each with two people onboard, got into difficulty in the Waterford estuary.

The first call-out came on Friday evening (9 October), when the volunteer crew were requested to launch their inshore lifeboat by the Irish Coast Guard at 5.15 pm and go to the aid of a Bayliner cruiser with two people on board that had suffered mechanical issues. The vessel had lost power and found itself in difficulty.

Fethard RNLI’s D-Class lifeboat launched from Duncannon Beach and the crew were soon alongside the casualty vessel. There were calm waters at the time and a Force 3 westerly wind. The crew assessed the situation and found that those onboard were safe and well. A towline was then established, and the vessel was towed to the safety of Dunmore East Harbour.

Second call out

A second call out came on Saturday afternoon (10 October) when the Irish Coast Guard requested the lifeboat to go to the aid of a 35ft vessel that had ran aground at the spider buoy near King’s Bay. Dunmore East RNLI’s all-weather Trent class lifeboat was also requested to launch. Due to the size of the vessel, it was decided that it should stay and await a flooding tide to get it off the sandbank. The crew of Fethard lifeboat assisted the two-person crew by deploying their anchor. The vessel was secured and remained there until it was safely able to move on when there was enough water.

Speaking after the call outs, Mark Brennan, Fethard RNLI volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer said: ‘We were happy to help the crew of both boats at the weekend. Situations can change very quickly at sea and mechanical failure is one of the main reasons for RNLI call outs. We would advise anyone out on the water to be prepared for an emergency by always wearing a lifejacket, checking your equipment before setting off, and always carrying some means of calling for help. Should you get into difficulty, call 999 or 112 and ask for the Coast Guard.’

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The volunteer lifeboat crew at Fethard RNLI were called out on Tuesday evening (28 April) to reports of a lone walker cut off by the incoming tide with no way of getting to safety.

During his walk the man had made his way from Bannow to the area known as Cocklestrand and continued along the sand, west of Bannow Island.

However, he did not notice that the tide was coming in and that the water was rapidly rising.

At this point, around 7pm, he could not make his way back to the shore as the channel had filled — but he was able to raise the alarm by with the Irish Coast Guard by mobile phone.

At 7.22pm the inshore lifeboat arrived on scene, where the crew were joined by the Waterford-based coastguard helicopter Rescue 117. However, the decision was made to bring the casualty aboard the lifeboat and the helicopter was stood down.

The walker was quickly assessed to gave no injuries and he was taken back to land at Cocklestrand. No further assistance was required.

Commenting on the callout, Fethard RNLI helm Eoin Bird said, “Thankfully conditions on scene were good with a calm sea state and a light southerly wind with excellent visibility.

“People are keen to exercise outside within Government guidelines and we are lucky enough to live in a beautiful area with access to the coast.

“However, we would advise people to keep an eye on their surroundings, in particular incoming tides and also to watch their footing on the shoreline.

“Fethard RNLI remain on call and fully operational during the Covid-19 pandemic. There is no crew training or exercises taking place at the moment but we are here if people need us.”

The RNLI and Irish Coast Guard this week renewed their call for people not to use the sea for exercise or recreation while the current restrictions are in place, as we head into the May Bank Holiday weekend.

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#RNLI - Fethard RNLI was involved in the rescue of six people yesterday evening (Monday 2 July) after two young girls drifted out to sea on an inflatable lilo.

The volunteer lifeboat crew were requested to launch their D class lifeboat at 8.31pm after two local women raised the alarm that they could see an airbed with two girls drifting out to sea off Duncannon Beach. With the wind blowing offshore, the airbed was blowing directly out to sea.

Four men, one of whom was the children’s father, had entered the sea and swam towards the girls.

With time of the essence, RNLI deputy launching authority Hugh Burke launched his own boat, which was nearer Duncannon, and made his way to the scene along with another local vessel.

Once there, he observed a windsurfer had made his way to the girls. One girl was on the lilo, and one of the four men who had swam out to help was holding onto the windsurfer’s board.

Burke took the girl and the swimmer onboard and brought them safely back to shore. On arrival, he was met by a shore crew member from Fethard RNLI who alerted him that a man, the father of the two girls who had been taken out of the water by a local swimmer, was in need of serious medical attention on Duncannon Beach.

The father had reached the airbed and rescued one of the girls. However, as he was swimming the half-mile back to the beach with his daughter, he too got into difficulty, and both were dragged under water.

One of the other men took the girl, who had taken on a lot of water, and made it safely to shore. That swimmer returned to the water to help but he too then got into difficulty as exhaustion from his efforts set in.

Meanwhile, a strong local swimmer, who had seen the incident unfold from his home, immediately got involved and went to the aid of this man, brought him to shore before going back into the sea and rescuing the father of the two girls.

As this was happening, a kayaker went to the aid of another man who had entered the water to help and was drifting 100m away from the others and was struggling. The casualty held onto the kayak as the kayaker brought him ashore.

The Dunmore East Coast Guard unit, which was also tasked, arrived on the beach just before the father and daughter were brought ashore. With the arrival of the coastguard unit and the Fethard RNLI lifeboat crew, casualty care was immediately administered by both teams.

The man was treated for hypothermia and for drifting in and out of consciousness. The girl was treated for inhaling a considerable amount of water. Both responded immediately to casualty care and were looked after by all the volunteers on scene until the arrival of an ambulance. They were then transferred to hospital for further treatment.

Speaking following the callout, Burke said: “With thanks to a huge community effort this evening, a tragedy was averted and we would like to commend all those locally who played their part in bringing the six people to safety. We also want to wish everyone who got into difficulty a speedy recovery following their ordeal.

“Time was of the essence this evening and from the raising of the alarm, to the local efforts to get to the scene to help, right through to the administration of casualty care, fortunately it resulted in a good outcome for all.

“We would like to remind everyone of the importance of respecting the water. We would ask the public to remember that inflatables such as lilos are designed for pools and not the open sea where they can be easily swept out by offshore winds and lead you into difficulty.

“Always wear a lifejacket, always carry a mean of communication and should you get into difficulty call 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard.”

The rescue come days after Fethard RNLI officially named their new D class lifeboat Naomh Dubhán, which was funded entirely by the local community.

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#RNLI - Fethard RNLI’s new D class lifeboat is to be officially named Naomh Dubhán during a ceremony next weekend.

All are welcome to attend the event next Saturday 30 June from 2pm at the lifeboat station in Fethard, Co Wexford.

The €65,000 lifesaving vessel — which went into service in February this year — was funded following a community appeal supported by the people of Fethard, the Hook Peninsula and the New Ross area.

The ceremony of naming and dedication for the lifeboat will have representation from the many volunteers who make up Fethard RNLI, from operations to fundraising and management.

This invitation is being extended to the community to give thanks and recognition to their support in raising the funds needed for the new lifeboat.

The name Naomh Dubhán was chosen in recognition of the saint who came to the Hook Peninsula from Wales in 452 AD and established a monastery.

It is believed that St Dubhán lit the first warning beacon for ships on the Hook Peninsula shortly after his arrival. This beacon was maintained by monks for 700 years until Hook Head Lighthouse was built.

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#RNLI - The volunteer crew with Fethard RNLI were requested to launch their inshore lifeboat shortly before noon yesterday (Thursday 10 August) following a call from a vessel with two on board who had got into difficulty when their engine failed.

The 17ft boat had lost engine power about two miles out from Fethard Quay in Co Wexford. 

Fethard’s lifeboat launched at 12.17pm and was on scene shortly after. Weather conditions at the time were good with a north-westerly Force 2 wind and calm seas.

Having assessed that the two people on board were safe and well and with both wearing lifejackets, the lifeboat crew worked with them to establish a tow line at the front of the boat before it was successfully brought back to harbour and moored at Fethard Quay.

Fethard RNLI deputy launching authority Hugh Burke commented: “We would remind anyone planning a trip at sea to go prepared and respect the water.

“Communication is vital and it is important that you always carry a means of calling or signalling for help should you get into difficulty and need to contact the emergency services. If you do find yourself in trouble or see someone else in difficulty call 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard.”

Burke also warned: “Mobile phones are not a reliable source of communication as signal can be weak at sea.”

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Coastal Notes Coastal Notes covers a broad spectrum of stories, events and developments in which some can be quirky and local in nature, while other stories are of national importance and are on-going, but whatever they are about, they need to be told.

Stories can be diverse and they can be influential, albeit some are more subtle than others in nature, while other events can be immediately felt. No more so felt, is firstly to those living along the coastal rim and rural isolated communities. Here the impact poses is increased to those directly linked with the sea, where daily lives are made from earning an income ashore and within coastal waters.

The topics in Coastal Notes can also be about the rare finding of sea-life creatures, a historic shipwreck lost to the passage of time and which has yet many a secret to tell. A trawler's net caught hauling more than fish but cannon balls dating to the Napoleonic era.

Also focusing the attention of Coastal Notes, are the maritime museums which are of national importance to maintaining access and knowledge of historical exhibits for future generations.

Equally to keep an eye on the present day, with activities of existing and planned projects in the pipeline from the wind and wave renewables sector and those of the energy exploration industry.

In addition Coastal Notes has many more angles to cover, be it the weekend boat leisure user taking a sedate cruise off a long straight beach on the coast beach and making a friend with a feathered companion along the way.

In complete contrast is to those who harvest the sea, using small boats based in harbours where infrastructure and safety poses an issue, before they set off to ply their trade at the foot of our highest sea cliffs along the rugged wild western seaboard.

It's all there, as Coastal Notes tells the stories that are arguably as varied to the environment from which they came from and indeed which shape people's interaction with the surrounding environment that is the natural world and our relationship with the sea.

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