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Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

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Displaying items by tag: Arklow

36 boats have entered the first ISORA offshore race to take place next Saturday. The offshore race will be approximately 60–miles, depending on the weather, starting in Holyhead and finishing in Dun Laoghaire. See attached ISORA entry list list below.

The fleet is a great cross section, from classic to high tech and from small to large, demonstrating the range of boats that are interested in racing offshore. The newly adopted “ISORA Progressive ECHO” will ensure a greater spread of prizes for the race with prizes for six classes and trophy for overall as well as the famous “Race Winners Jacket”, says ISORA's Peter Ryan. 

The gathering of such a large numbers of boats and their crew in Holyhead on the Friday evening and again hopefully at the NYC on Saturday evening will generate a great social atmosphere, adds Ryan.

After Holyhead to Dun Laoghaire, the ISORA fleet gather again for a new offshore race to Arklow on May 27th. Read more on that new race here.

Published in ISORA
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#MarineWildlife - The Wicklow People reports that a six-week-old common seal is being treated for suspected stab wounds after being found in “very shape” by people walking on Arklow’s South Beach yesterday morning (Friday 18 November).

The incident is the second in three weeks in the Arklow area to involve a seal with wounds thought to have been caused by human hands. More on this story HERE.

Published in Marine Wildlife

#RNLI - Arklow RNLI was called out early this morning (Sunday 19 June) to go the assistance of a casualty in difficulty near Arklow Harbour.

Within minutes of a pager alert at 6.23am, the lifeboat Ger Tigchlearr and her volunteer crew was launched to a report of a man in difficulty in the water outside the harbour.

As the lifeboat arrived on scene, a local fishing vessel had also come to the assistance of the casualty and had been trying with difficulty to get the man aboard the fishing boat.

The man was shortly thereafter recovered from the water by the fishermen and transferred to the Arklow lifeboat.

Casualty care was administered aboard the lifeboat, which then returned to station immediately to transfer the casualty to a waiting ambulance.

Following the callout, Arklow RNLI volunteer lifeboat press officer Mark Corcoran said: "We’re thankful to the skipper of the local fishing vessel for assistance in this rescue. Working together we were able to recover the casualty from the water. We would like to wish the casualty a speedy recovery."

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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When the report appeared here on Afloat.ie on Monday about the assistance given by Arklow RNLI to the “stranded” classic yacht off the Arklow pierheads on May 1st, warning bells rang writes W M Nixon.

For classic boat enthusiasts will have instantly recognised that the yacht in question is the 43ft ketch Maybird, built by Tyrrells of Arklow in 1937, and superbly restored in the heart of the classic yacht industry in Southampton between 2009 and 2011 by a team of all the talents in a job project-managed by owner Darryl Hughes.

Most folk on the classic yacht circuit will be aware that Maybird is entered for the Volvo Round Ireland Race from Wicklow on June 18th, in which she’ll be the oldest boat ever to have taken part. And those of us really in the know will have been aware that Darryl Hughes hopes that members of Arklow Sailing Club - and maybe even descendants of the men who built the boat back in 1937 – will be on the crew for the big race.

The Arklow maritime community being what it is, many members of the sailing club are also on the RNLI Lifeboat Crew panel, and thus some of them were on board Maybird when she set off from Cork Harbour to sail for Arklow early last Saturday as part of a programme to build up mileage experience in order to qualify for the round Ireland.

So when the photo appeared on Monday showing Maybird about to be taken in tow on Sunday evening by the Arklow lifeboat after her engine had failed right in the entrance to Arklow Harbour, at first all we could think of was the embarrassment of those on Maybird at having to be “rescued” by their colleagues.

But then we remembered that May 1st, May Day, is a great lifeboat fund-raising day, and particularly so in Arklow. So then cynical thoughts took over, thinking that maybe this was a cleverly-planned fund-raising stunt: Maybird, Mayday, May*rs* we thought.

There are times you can be just too hard-bitten. Turns out the whole story is absolutely kosher. Prior to leaving winter quarters in Crosshaven, when servicing the engine Darryl had noticed the bleed screw on the secondary fuel filter did not seem to be making an airtight fit. But the engine started with no bother, and motored the boat without trouble from Crosshaven to the Custom House Quay in Cork to meet the Arklow crew, and then took Maybird, with full complement aboard, down to Cobh on Friday evening to prepare for departure towards Arklow last Saturday morning.

They’d a fine sail round to the east coast, going outside the Tuskar to simulate round Ireland conditions, but then off the Glassgorman Bank an engine start test failed. There was air in the fuel system, but Darryl solved the problem with plumbers’ PTFE tape on the bleed screw, and they were back in business with a fading breeze, motoring the final miles and stowing sails with the engine performing well.

But just as the pierheads came abeam, the engine cut out. Fortunately Maybird’s multiple-sail rig provides almost instant hoisting of the staysail – “always the last sail to be stowed” – and they were able to sail clear and keep the situation under control while the Arklow lifeboat leapt at the chance to carry out a rescue.

As it happens, Jimmy Mylor, who organises the Arklow Sea Scouts in addition to being on the Lifeboat Crew, had meant to be on Maybird, but work commitments had caused him to drop out. Yet it was he who handed Maybird’s crew the lifeboat’s towing warp amidst much banter, banter which went on for some time.

But now the Arklow marine industry have rallied round to make sure that a new bleed screw on Maybird’s secondary filter is getting a proper seal, and all being well, Maybird will race this Saturday in Arklow SC’s weekend event. We don’t know how much extra RNLI fund-raising was done as a result of this “stunt-for-real”. But the message yet again is that you can only have three problems with a good modern marine diesel engine – fuel, fuel, and fuel.

may bird2
Maybird as she looks when all is as it should be

Published in Historic Boats

#RNLI - Lifeboats from Arklow and Bangor were out on the water for separate callouts on May Day yesterday in what made for a busy weekend for the RNLI crews.

In Arklow, RNLI lifeboat volunteers were alerted by pager around 7pm on a fine Sunday evening (1 May) to a call for help from a vintage sailing vessel.

The lifeboat Ger Tigchleaar was launched within minutes to the classic boat, which has suffered engine failure and was stranded just east of Arklow Harbour.

The Arklow RNLI volunteer crew established a tow line and proceeded to tow the vessel safely back into Arklow. The five experienced crew members on the casualty vessel remained aboard during the tow home and all hands came ashore safely at Arklow.

Speaking after the incident, volunteer lifeboat press officer and community safety officer Mark Corcoran said: "On this, the RNLI’s Mayday fundraising weekend, our fundraising team and boats crew have been busy with all kinds of fundraising events.

"Even after a long day of fundraising our dedicated volunteers turned up this evening en masse to go to the aid of the crew of this stricken vessel.

"We’re all very proud to be involved with the RNLI, so please give generously to the Mayday campaign to help keep us doing what we do, which is saving lives at sea."

Elsewhere on the same evening, Bangor RNLI’s volunteer lifeboat crew launched to the aid of a RIB with engine failure just off Royal North Yacht Club in Belfast Lough.

Although not in immediate danger, a strong breeze was blowing the vessel, with one person on board, offshore. Thankfully the Bangor inshore lifeboat was able to tow the RIB in to Royal North without incident.

Bangor RNLI volunteer helmsman Gareth Whan said: “The crew and I are delighted to have been able to return this vessel safely to shore. Engine failure can happen in the best-maintained boat, and we are pleased to have been able to help.”

This was Bangor RNLI’s second callout of the weekend. On Friday evening (29 April) they were asked by Belfast Coastguard to assist Lagan Search and Rescue and other emergency services in a detailed search of Belfast Harbour for a person in the water.

Sadly, this callout did not have a happy ending. The search was called off after three hours, and resumed on Saturday morning. However, it was only yesterday (Sunday 1 May) when a body was found by police divers.

Bangor RNLI extended its sympathies to the family of the man and all involved in the attempted rescue.

“It is sadly appropriate that both of these launches happened during the May Day weekend, a key fundraising time for the RNLI, and highlight the importance of the work our volunteers do,” said Bangor's deputy launching authority Bryan Lawther.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

#RNLI - Three RNLI lifeboats from Wicklow and Arklow launched after 5am on Tuesday morning (23 February) to assist a grounded fishing vessel with seven people onboard.

The volunteer lifeboat crews quickly located the 20m fishing boat, which had run aground on the Wolf Rock near the beach at Brittas Bay.

Weather conditions in the area at the time were described as blowing north-easterly with Force 4-5 winds and rough seas.

Arriving on scene, the lifeboat crews observed that no one was in immediate danger. No leaks or damage were found during an inspection of the hull.

Towlines were quickly established between the casualty vessel using Wicklow RNLI’s inshore lifeboat. The vessel was re-floated by the all-weather lifeboats from both stations and the vessel was towed clear of the rock and onward to Wicklow Harbour, where she was safely secured alongside the East Pier shortly before 11am.

Speaking following the callout, Wicklow RNLI volunteer lifeboat press officer Tommy Dover said: "Our lifeboat and shore crews had an early call this morning but we were delighted to help and bring this vessel safely to shore.

"The callout was a real team effort this morning where ours crews from both Wicklow and Arklow were able to put their skills and joint training to good use in assisting the fishermen to Wicklow Harbour."

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

#RNLI - Arklow RNLI's volunteers were enjoying their Sunday morning (27 September) when their pagers sounded at 10.55am.

Within minutes Arklow’s all-weather lifeboat Ger Tigchleaar had slipped her moorings and was en route to a catamaran that had reported engine trouble, some eight miles off the coast on the outside of the Arklow Bank.

The lifeboat crew located the casualty, who had re-routed across the bank, and a crew member was put aboard the 9m vessel to assist the sailor.

Once aboard, a towline was quickly established and the lifeboat proceeded the long, slow tow back to Arklow.

The stricken catamaran had been on a passage from Holyhead to Kilmore Quay when it got into difficulty.

All hands – including the sailor's pet dog – came ashore safely on the Avoca River at Arklow.

Arklow RNLI’s volunteer crew on this call out included coxswain Brendan Dillon, mechanic Geoff Kearnes, Roger Tyrell, Aidan Downey, David Lee, Jimmy Myler and Craig O’Reilly.

Speaking following the incident Arklow RNLI volunteer lifeboat press officer Mark Corcoran said: "This man made the call for help early which ensured our crew could get out to his assistance in time.

"No matter how experienced a sailor is, we would always encourage anyone to carry a means for calling for help and plan your passage with sufficient fuel and other required items for the trip."

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Tagged under

#RNLI - Following an alert by pager on Saturday afternoon (5 September), Arklow RNLI’s lifeboat Ger Tigchleaar was launched within minutes to the aid of the casualty vessel that was reported to be taking on water and at risk of sinking.

The volunteer lifeboat crew proceeded to the scene and after locating the fishing vessel 2.4km east of Mizen Head, it was established that the 44-metre mussel dredger was taking on large volumes of water, but was not in immediate risk of sinking as the vessel's own pumps were keeping it afloat.

The skipper of the mussel vessel requested the Arklow lifeboat to standby to assist should the situation worsen and escort the them back to Arklow Harbour.

Upon arrival back at Arklow, where all crew came ashore safely, the vessel was grounded on the slipway to prepare for repairs to be made. At this point the casualty vessel's pumps failed.

Immediately the Arklow lifeboats crew rendered assistance and put crew and a salvage pump aboard to help empty the hull of water. They assisted in stemming the ingress of water and making a temporary repair using one of the lifeboat crew's trademark yellow wellies as part of the temporary fix.

Speaking following the incident, Arklow RNLI volunteer lifeboat press officer Mark Corcoran said: “Thankfully the skipper of this vessel made the call for help early. When you are going to sea in any vessel always plan for the worst, always carry a means of calling for help and never hesitate in making the call to 999 or 112 or contacting the coastguard via marine VHF.:

Arklow RNLI’s volunteer lifeboat crew for this callout were Brendan Dillon, Michael Fitzgerald, Geoff Kearnes, Jimmy Myler, Eddie McElheron, Leigh Downey and Craig O’Reilly.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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#RNLI - Following a lifeboat pager alert at 1.18pm yesterday afternoon (Thursday 9 July), Arklow RNLI's volunteer crew launched to a stricken sailing vessel.

Within minutes of the alert, the lifeboat Ger Tigchleaar was en route from Arklow Harbour in good weather and slack winds to the casualty boat, a local sailing yacht about 1.5 miles north.

The vessel, with two crew onboard, had suffered engine failure. 

Under the direction of coxswain Ned Dillon, the lifeboat crew – Michael Fitzgerald, Andrew Loughlin, Jimmy Myler and Leigh Downey – secured a tow line to the vessel and brought her and her crew back safely to Arklow Harbour, bringing her alongside at the inner dock marina pontoons.



Speaking following the callout, Arklow RNLI volunteer press officer Mark Corcoran said: "Even very experienced sailors can get into difficulty. If you’re going out on the sea, be prepared and plan for the worst and always have a means of calling for help. Always respect the water."

Howth RNLI had a trickier callout to deal with three days earlier after a sailing yacht beached on rocks at Lambay Island.

The lifeboat was on scene and located the casualty vessel just before 11.00am on Monday 6 July. Volunteer lifeboat crew Ian Martin and Ian Sheridan launched their small XP inflatable boat and went ashore to investigate in poor weather conditions, with the win gusting to 58 knots and a rough sea state. 


Two men were located aboard and the decision was made by lifeboat coxswain Fred Connolly to request the coastguard helicopter to lift the casualties to safety as the sea was too rough to risk a transfer to the all-weather lifeboat using the XP inflatable.


The two men were airlifted to safety and the lifeboat returned to station in what was described by the volunteer crew as "challenging conditions".

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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#RNLI - Arklow RNLI’s volunteer lifeboat crew were alerted by pager at 6.44pm yesterday evening (14 June) to a call for help from a local fishing vessel in the station's second callout of the week, following the lifeboat's midweek rescue of a stricken sailboat.

The crew consisting of coxswain Ned Dillon, station mechanic Michael Fitzgerald, John Bermingham, Scotty Heaney, Keith Forde and Eddie McElheron launched the lifeboat Ger Tigchleaar and proceeded to the vessel, which had suffered machinery failure and was adrift outside the mouth of Arklow Harbour.

After locating the casualty vessel, the lifeboat crew established a tow line and proceeded back in to Arklow with the vessel alongside. All crew members aboard the casualty remained aboard during the service and all hands came ashore safely.

Speaking following the incident, Arklow RNLI volunteer lifeboat press officer Mark Corcoran said: "All people who take to the water whether for a living or for pleasure must always wear their lifejackets and should always have a means of raising the alarm."

Elsewhere, RNLI volunteers aboard Donaghadee's all-weather lifeboat Saxon sped to the rescue of a stricken vessel as darkness fell on Friday evening (12 June).

The 10-metre craft with a crew of one developed engine trouble on a passage to Westport in Co Mayo and was adrift in the busy sea lanes at the mouth of Belfast Lough.

The Donaghadee lifeboat launched at the request of the coastguard at 10.15pm and conducted a search in the gathering gloom one mile north of the Copeland Islands until the vessel was located.

In light sea conditions, a member of the RNLI crew boarded the vessel to assist with repairs and the lifeboat then escorted it to the safety of Bangor MarinaSaxon was back on station and stood down shortly after midnight.

Donaghadee RNLI coxswain Philip McNamara advised all boat owners "to conduct a thorough check of their engines, communications and safety equipment before putting to sea.

"If you encounter a problem, call for assistance at the earliest opportunity. We are ready to be of service and It is always better to be safe than sorry."

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Page 4 of 9

Marine Wildlife Around Ireland One of the greatest memories of any day spent boating around the Irish coast is an encounter with marine wildlife.  It's a thrill for young and old to witness seabirds, seals, dolphins and whales right there in their own habitat. As boaters fortunate enough to have experienced it will testify even spotting a distant dorsal fin can be the highlight of any day afloat.  Was that a porpoise? Was it a whale? No matter how brief the glimpse it's a privilege to share the seas with Irish marine wildlife.

Thanks to the location of our beautiful little island, perched in the North Atlantic Ocean there appears to be no shortage of marine life to observe.

From whales to dolphins, seals, sharks and other ocean animals this page documents the most interesting accounts of marine wildlife around our shores. We're keen to receive your observations, your photos, links and youtube clips.

Boaters have a unique perspective and all those who go afloat, from inshore kayaking to offshore yacht racing that what they encounter can be of real value to specialist organisations such as the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) who compile a list of sightings and strandings. The IWDG knowledge base has increased over the past 21 years thanks in part at least to the observations of sailors, anglers, kayakers and boaters.

Thanks to the IWDG work we now know we share the seas with dozens of species who also call Ireland home. Here's the current list: Atlantic white-sided dolphin, beluga whale, blue whale, bottlenose dolphin, common dolphin, Cuvier's beaked whale, false killer whale, fin whale, Gervais' beaked whale, harbour porpoise, humpback whale, killer whale, minke whale, northern bottlenose whale, northern right whale, pilot whale, pygmy sperm whale, Risso's dolphin, sei whale, Sowerby's beaked whale, sperm whale, striped dolphin, True's beaked whale and white-beaked dolphin.

But as impressive as the species list is the IWDG believe there are still gaps in our knowledge. Next time you are out on the ocean waves keep a sharp look out!

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