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Dublin Bay Boating News and Information

Displaying items by tag: RNLI

Fethard RNLI launched its inshore lifeboat on Wednesday evening last (29 June) to assist the crew of a 25-foot yacht which had broken down in Bannow Bay.

The volunteer crew was requested to launch their inshore lifeboat by the Irish Coast Guard just after 9.15 pm. The crew proceeded to Fethard Dock, launched the lifeboat, and made their way to an area Northeast of The Windy Gap. Weather conditions at the time were good with a light force 2 north-westerly breeze, calm sea conditions and good visibility.

The crew arrived at the broken-down vessel at 9.40 pm where it was at anchor. The lifeboat crew assessed the situation, and decided to establish a tow line, retract the keel, and tow the vessel to the safe water of Bannow, north of the Cockle strand.

This launch also marked the first shout for volunteer crew member Mick Cooper, as well as the first launch as Helm for Mick Roche.

Speaking after the call out, volunteer Helm Mick Roche said ‘the crew of the yacht did everything right. They were well equipped with life jackets, navigation tools, means of communication and great local knowledge but were unfortunate to have engine difficulties. The crew did the right thing by alerting the Irish Coast Guard at the earliest opportunity to get help on its way'. Mick continued by saying ‘This call also highlights the importance of always carrying a means of communication when involved in any water activities in or by the sea.’

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Wicklow RNLI were delighted to welcome Jordann Wizowski and his mother Megan to the lifeboat station for a very special presentation recently.

Five-year-old Jordann completed a walk between the present Wicklow RNLI lifeboat station and the former station on the Murrough as part of the RNLI Mayday Mile challenge and raised €250 from family and friends in the process.

Jordann, who is a member of the RNLI Storm Force kids’ club, presented the cheque to Santiago Balbontin from the Wicklow RNLI fundraising branch — and was delighted some of the volunteer crew gathered for a photograph.

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Dun Laoghaire Harbour might see more of the R116 Coastguard Helicopter after this month's major inter-agency marine and coastal agency emergency services display at the Dublin Bay Port.

Held in the Ferry Marshalling Area of the Harbour on June 16th, the display was described as a 'non-public event'.

Arising out of the pow-wow, the County Dublin site has been highlighted as one with good connectivity and landing options for the coastguard helicopter.  This is especially the case concerning Ambulance transfer to nearby St. Vincent's Hospital at Elmpark in Dublin 4, according to one Afloat source.

The briefing dealt with emergency landing zones, evacuation procedures, Ambulance access points, Major incident facilities and Port Secure Zones. 

The operational briefing had static displays and equipment capabilities with the Irish Coast Guard's Dun Laoghaire Unit, RNLI Dun Laoghaire Lifeboat Station, Irish Coast Guard - Rescue Helicopter 116 and DLRCOCO staff from Dun Laoghaire Harbour and Dun Laoghaire Marina. 

An Incident Command Unit, Mobile units and equipment, an All-terrain vehicle, Dun Laoghaire's Trent class All-Weather lifeboat, D-Class Inshore lifeboat, and R116 were displayed.

Dun Laoghaire Harbour RNLI rescued Sadie, a boxer dog who had fallen more than 3m below the pier walkway close to the Half Moon swimming area on the South Bull Wall at Dublin Port on Wednesday (29 June) while walking with her owner.

The volunteer crew were requested to launch their inshore lifeboat shortly before 10 am by the Irish Coast Guard

Dun Laoghaire Coast Guard was also tasked but the 3m climb down to retrieve the dog was not possible for the shore crew. The crew launched the lifeboat at 9.58 am and arrived at the scene within 12 minutes.

Weather conditions at the time were calm, however with the tide out, exposed, slippery and jagged rocks running along the Bull Wall meant Sadie was in a precarious position.

Once on scene, the crew calmly approached Sadie and brought her on board the lifeboat where she was found to be shaken but safe and well, however sporting some minor cuts on her paws from the fall. The lifeboat then safely returned Sadie to her owner at the slipway a short distance down the wall.

Speaking following the call out, Dun Laoghaire RNLI Helm Nathan Burke said: ‘We were delighted to be able to reunite Sadie with her owner following her ordeal today and wish her a speedy recovery. The owner did the right thing raising the alarm when she was in difficulty rather than entering the water themselves.

‘We would encourage pet owners to keep their pets on a lead when walking near the water’s edge, close cliff edges or fast-flowing waters. If your pet does enter the water, don’t go in after them. If worried, call 999 or 112 and ask for the Coast Guard.’

As regular Afloat readers know, Dun Laoghaire's new inshore boat was christened 'Joval' earlier this month

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

Dun Laoghaire RNLI rescued two stand-up paddleboarders who got into difficulty off Seapoint in Dublin Bay last Saturday (25 June).

The volunteer crew were requested to launch their inshore lifeboat at 12.55 pm by the Irish Coast Guard. The alarm was raised by lifeguards who were on patrol at Seapoint and observed the two stand-up paddleboarders experiencing difficulty some distance out in Dublin Bay.

The D class lifeboat with three crew members on board, launched at 1.06 pm and arrived on scene six minutes later at 1.12 pm. As regular Afloat readers will know, this new lifeboat was officially named in Dun Laoghaire earlier this month

Weather conditions at the time were fresh to blustery with a Force 5 wind, a slight sea state and waves up to 1.25m.

Once on scene, the crew quickly located the two casualties and brought them on board the lifeboat where they were assessed and found to be safe and well. The lifeboat then safely returned them ashore at Seapoint.

Speaking following the call out, Eamon O’Leary, Dun Laoghaire RNLI Deputy Launching Authority said: ‘We would like to wish the paddleboarders well after they got caught out by a change in weather conditions at sea on Saturday.

‘As the summer holidays get underway this week, we would like to remind anybody planning an activity at sea to check weather forecasts and tide times before venturing out. Always carry a means of communication and always let someone on the shore know where you are going and when you are due back. Should you get into difficulty or see someone else in trouble, dial 999 or 112 and ask for the Coast Guard.’

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

The RNLI’s most westerly shop in Ireland has opened its doors on Inis Mór, the largest of the Aran Islands, to raise vital lifesaving funds for the charity that saves lives at sea.

The new shop which is located inside Aran Islands RNLI’s lifeboat station at Kilronan Pier, is quickly becoming a key attraction for both the islanders and the many visitors who come each year. The shop means visitors can leave Inis Mór with a memory of their time on the island while supporting the charity.

The shop launched last Tuesday, and volunteers plan to have it open seven days a week during the tourist season (Easter through to Autumn) with opening times coinciding with the ferry arrival and departure times.

The shop offers a wide range of unique RNLI goods, including clothing and accessories, home and kitchen gadgets, toys and games, books and stationery, and gifts.The shop offers a wide range of unique RNLI goods, including clothing and accessories, home and kitchen gadgets, toys and games, books and stationery, and gifts.

The shop crew include volunteers Amy Williamson, Breda O’Donnell, Daniel and Lena O’Connell, David Terry, Margaret Jackie Gill, Shane Dirrane, Siobhán McGuinness and Treasa Ni Bhraonain, all of whom are looking forward to a busy summer after an exceptional first week serving local islanders and visiting tourists.

Speaking following the first week of trading, Brian Wilson, RNLI Community Manager, shares the shop team’s excitement: ‘We are delighted that Inis Mór is joining the rich heritage of lifeboat station shops in the RNLI. This is the second RNLI shop on the west coast of Ireland, along with Sligo Bay which is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. The response in the first week has more than exceeded our expectations. We have had a wonderful response from locals and tourists alike and I want to thank the team here for their efforts in getting us to this point as well as thanking everyone who has visited and shown their support since the opening last week.

‘RNLI shops started 100 years ago as cake stands before they expanded into selling commemorative souvenirs and cards, and now we offer an excellent range of RNLI products with all profits helping to save lives at sea. So, we are all thrilled that this piece of RNLI heritage has reached Inis Mór and that the proceeds raised can now help to power the lifesaving work of the volunteer crew on the Aran Islands.’

The shop team at Aran Islands RNLI are looking for more volunteers. If you think you can give some time to help out, please call into the shop for more information.

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Volunteer lifeboat crew from Courtmacsherry and Ballycotton RNLI, along with members of Barryroe GAA are featuring in a short film to promote a drowning prevention partnership between the RNLI and the GAA. The two organisations have been working together on a water safety partnership since 2017, which has seen RNLI volunteers visit their local GAA clubs to share water safety advice and information. The film has been released in advance of the RNLI’s appearance on the pitch at Croke Park to promote the partnership, at the upcoming All-Ireland Senior Hurling semi-final this Sunday (3 July) between Limerick and Galway.

The one-minute film was made to promote the partnership between the RNLI and the GAA and shows how both organisations share the same values of community and volunteerism. Many RNLI volunteers are also GAA volunteers, and the aim of the partnership has been to share water safety advice as widely as possible in all communities. The film was made on location at Courtmacsherry lifeboat station and Barryroe GAA club by Banjoman Productions. It shows a lifeboat training exercise and a water safety talk to a room of school children. While over at the GAA club, players take to the pitch and warm up for a match. It shows the importance of the many different roles the volunteers hold.

The film will be shown on the big screen in Croke Park before the semi-final on Sunday and will be shared with lifeboat stations, branches, and clubs. There are 46 lifeboat stations on the island of Ireland, with 333 GAA clubs within a 10km radius of them. On average 111 people drown in Ireland each year and the work being done through the partnership aims to give everyone the knowledge of what they can do to both keep safe or help someone in trouble on the water.

One of the volunteers to feature in the film is Vincent O’Donovan, Courtmacsherry RNLI Deputy Launching Authority. A volunteer in both the RNLI and the GAA, Vincent hopes that the film will encourage more people to get involved in their community and think about water safety. Vincent said, ‘I’m very proud to be involved in the film and that it shows what is good about volunteering and local communities. Many of us in our local RNLI are also involved with the GAA, they go together and it’s a wonderful partnership. I hope people will want to get involved in their community and learn more about water safety.’

RNLI Trustee and Coxswain, Paddy McLaughlin has been involved with the partnership from the beginning and has seen it evolve over the last few years. Paddy said, ‘When we approached the GAA with the idea of working together to prevent drowning, they supported it straight way. Since 2017, RNLI volunteers have been giving hundreds of talks to GAA clubs and have been invited to events and match days to promote water safety. This is a lifesaving partnership and with so many people involved in the GAA on this island, we are getting water safety advice and awareness talked about in our communities.’

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Newcastle RNLI rescued five rowers early yesterday morning (Sunday 26 June) after they got into difficulty in challenging weather conditions 23 nautical miles northeast of Ardglass.

The crew from the GB Row Challenge had left Tower Bridge London on 12 June to circumnavigate Great Britain and to collect environmental data.

The vessel had been monitored throughout the night by HM Coastguard with frequent radio transmissions. During a check at 7 am on Sunday, the rowers explained they had capsized and righted themselves but were unable to row.

Newcastle RNLI was requested to launch their all-weather lifeboat at 7.15 am. Weather conditions at the time were poor with a Force 7 southerly wind and very rough seas. The lifeboat launched under Gerry McConkey and with crew members Shane Rice, Lochlainn Leneghan, Declan McClelland, Karl Brannigan and Declan Barry onboard. Conditions deteriorated following the launch with weather increasing to a Force 9 southerly wind and high seas.

On arrival at 9.24 am, the volunteer crew assessed the situation and decided a tow was necessary to bring the vessel’s crew to safety. Such were the conditions at sea that it took three attempts before a tow was successfully established. Newcastle RNLI then towed the vessel to the nearest safe port at Ardglass, a passage that took two hours.

The rowers were met by Newcastle Coastguard, and one was checked over by the Northern Ireland Ambulance Service.

Speaking following the call out, Newcastle RNLI Coxswain Gerry McConkey said: “We would like to wish the rowers well following their experience yesterday after they got caught by the poor weather. I would also like to commend our volunteer crew who used their skills and training to work in what were extremely challenging conditions that deteriorated during the call out to successfully bring the five people to safety.”

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, another crew of round-Britain rowers were rescued by Red Bay RNLI on Saturday (25 June) amid “hugely challenging conditions” at sea off Northern Ireland.

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At a special naming ceremony and service of dedication held today (Sunday 26 June), volunteers at Dunmore East RNLI officially named their all-weather Shannon class lifeboat, William and Agnes Wray.

The lifeboat which went on service in September last year is named after the Manchester couple who were happily married for over 60 years and who had three children, all of whom have had a proud connection to the sea.

The honour of handing over the lifeboat and officially naming her, went to Robin Malcolm, a representative of David Malcolm, a secondary funder of the lifeboat, assisted by crew member Brendan Dunne. The Shannon is the third all-weather lifeboat that Brendan, a volunteer with the RNLI for 37 years, has served on. He was also crew on the Waveney class, St Patrick and the Trent class Elizabeth and Ronald.

Dunmore East RNLI's All-Weather Shannon Class LifeboatDunmore East RNLI crew on the All-Weather Shannon Class Lifeboat for the christening ceremony

The Shannon replaces the station’s Trent class lifeboat which was on service in Dunmore East since 1996. During those 25 years, Elizabeth and Ronald launched 412 times, bringing 821 people to safety, 20 of whom were lives saved.

During today’s naming ceremony, John Killeen, RNLI Trustee and Chair of the RNLI Council in Ireland, accepted the lifeboat on behalf of the charity before handing her into the care of Dunmore East RNLI.

Deputy Launching Authority Karen Harris accepted the lifeboat on behalf of the station ahead of the Shannon being blessed in a service of dedication led by Father Brian Power and the Reverend Bruce Hayes. The lifeboat was then officially named William and Agnes Wray.

During her address, Karen said the event was a special occasion for the lifeboat station adding that the crew were most grateful to the donors for their generous gift which had funded the lifeboat.

‘As Deputy Launching Authority, part of my job is to authorise her launch when requested. It is my job to send a message to the volunteers, asking them to get down to the station as quickly as possible. When the crew arrive here and get kitted up and head out to sea, we will have peace of mind because this lifeboat will help to keep them safe as they save others. So, on behalf of all the station volunteers, I would like to thank the donors. Your generosity has given Dunmore East a lifesaver.’

Dunmore East RNLI's All-Weather Shannon Class LifeboatThe lifeboat now stationed in the popular Waterford fishing village is the first Shannon class in the RNLI fleet to be based in the south-east of Ireland.

The Shannon class lifeboat is the first modern all-weather lifeboat to be propelled by waterjets instead of traditional propellers, making it the most agile and manoeuvrable all-weather lifeboat in the RNLI’s fleet. The naming of the class of lifeboat follows a tradition of naming lifeboats after rivers. When the Shannon was introduced to the RNLI fleet, it became the first time an Irish river was chosen, and it was done so to reflect the commitment and dedication of Irish lifeboat crew for generations.

Dunmore East RNLI was established in 1884. Since then, the crews have received 18 awards for gallantry.

Among the guests on the platform party were Eddy Stewart-Liberty, Lifeboat Management Group Chair, who welcomed guests and opened and closed proceedings, RNLI Trustee John Killeen who accepted the lifeboat on behalf of the RNLI and handed it into the care of Dunmore East Lifeboat Station, Karen Harris, Dunmore East RNLI Deputy Launching Authority, Robin Malcolm representing David Malcolm and Brendan Dunne who named the lifeboat and David Carroll, author of Dauntless Courage, who delivered a vote of thanks.

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Castletownbere RNLI lifeboat in West Cork was launched on Saturday 25 June 2022 at 10.05 pm last night to go to the immediate assistance of two sailors who were crossing the Atlantic and had run into challenging weather and needed assistance.

A Vermont-based couple had set out in their 37-foot yacht from Boston a number of weeks ago and were crossing the Atlantic on route to Scotland.

At 5:30 pm yesterday evening, the Irish Coast Guard’s Marine Research Coordination Centre in Valentia advised the yacht to change course and make for Castletownbere due to deteriorating weather conditions.

As the evening progressed and weather conditions became increasingly challenging Castletownbere lifeboat, ‘Annette Hutton’, was tasked at 10.00 pm and launched immediately under the command of Coxswain Dean Hegarty with crew Dave O’Donovan, David Lynch, Marc O’Hare, Donagh Murphy and Dion Kelly.

Castletownbere lifeboat, ‘Annette Hutton’, was tasked at 10.00 pm and launched immediatelyCastletownbere lifeboat, ‘Annette Hutton’, was tasked at 10.00 pm and launched immediately

The yacht was located at 10:46 pm. ten miles South-West of Castletownbere – conditions on scene were Westerly Force 6/7 winds and a 3-metre sea swell.

A local fishing boat assisted while the lifeboat escorted the yacht. Once in calmer waters, a lifeboat volunteer went aboard to assist with berthing the yacht at Castletownbere pier. When ashore, the sailors had refreshments in the lifeboat and expressed their gratitude to the Irish Coast Guard, The Castletownbere lifeboat and the skipper of the local trawler. One of the sailors commented: ‘It was so reassuring to see the lifeboat coming – we were tired and sea conditions were challenging and we are so delighted to be safe and on dry land now!’

This was Castletownbere lifeboat's second call-out in two days – on Saturday, the lifeboat was involved in a multi-agency search for a missing person in the Ballylickey area.

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Dublin Bay

Dublin Bay on the east coast of Ireland stretches over seven kilometres, from Howth Head on its northern tip to Dalkey Island in the south. It's a place most Dubliners simply take for granted, and one of the capital's least visited places. But there's more going on out there than you'd imagine.

The biggest boating centre is at Dun Laoghaire Harbour on the Bay's south shore that is home to over 1,500 pleasure craft, four waterfront yacht clubs and Ireland's largest marina.

The bay is rather shallow with many sandbanks and rocky outcrops, and was notorious in the past for shipwrecks, especially when the wind was from the east. Until modern times, many ships and their passengers were lost along the treacherous coastline from Howth to Dun Laoghaire, less than a kilometre from shore.

The Bay is a C-shaped inlet of the Irish Sea and is about 10 kilometres wide along its north-south base, and 7 km in length to its apex at the centre of the city of Dublin; stretching from Howth Head in the north to Dalkey Point in the south. North Bull Island is situated in the northwest part of the bay, where one of two major inshore sandbanks lie, and features a 5 km long sandy beach, Dollymount Strand, fronting an internationally recognised wildfowl reserve. Many of the rivers of Dublin reach the Irish Sea at Dublin Bay: the River Liffey, with the River Dodder flow received less than 1 km inland, River Tolka, and various smaller rivers and streams.

Dublin Bay FAQs

There are approximately ten beaches and bathing spots around Dublin Bay: Dollymount Strand; Forty Foot Bathing Place; Half Moon bathing spot; Merrion Strand; Bull Wall; Sandycove Beach; Sandymount Strand; Seapoint; Shelley Banks; Sutton, Burrow Beach

There are slipways on the north side of Dublin Bay at Clontarf, Sutton and on the southside at Dun Laoghaire Harbour, and in Dalkey at Coliemore and Bulloch Harbours.

Dublin Bay is administered by a number of Government Departments, three local authorities and several statutory agencies. Dublin Port Company is in charge of navigation on the Bay.

Dublin Bay is approximately 70 sq kilometres or 7,000 hectares. The Bay is about 10 kilometres wide along its north-south base, and seven km in length east-west to its peak at the centre of the city of Dublin; stretching from Howth Head in the north to Dalkey Point in the south.

Dun Laoghaire Harbour on the southside of the Bay has an East and West Pier, each one kilometre long; this is one of the largest human-made harbours in the world. There also piers or walls at the entrance to the River Liffey at Dublin city known as the Great North and South Walls. Other harbours on the Bay include Bulloch Harbour and Coliemore Harbours both at Dalkey.

There are two marinas on Dublin Bay. Ireland's largest marina with over 800 berths is on the southern shore at Dun Laoghaire Harbour. The other is at Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club on the River Liffey close to Dublin City.

Car and passenger Ferries operate from Dublin Port to the UK, Isle of Man and France. A passenger ferry operates from Dun Laoghaire Harbour to Howth as well as providing tourist voyages around the bay.

Dublin Bay has two Islands. Bull Island at Clontarf and Dalkey Island on the southern shore of the Bay.

The River Liffey flows through Dublin city and into the Bay. Its tributaries include the River Dodder, the River Poddle and the River Camac.

Dollymount, Burrow and Seapoint beaches

Approximately 1,500 boats from small dinghies to motorboats to ocean-going yachts. The vast majority, over 1,000, are moored at Dun Laoghaire Harbour which is Ireland's boating capital.

In 1981, UNESCO recognised the importance of Dublin Bay by designating North Bull Island as a Biosphere because of its rare and internationally important habitats and species of wildlife. To support sustainable development, UNESCO’s concept of a Biosphere has evolved to include not just areas of ecological value but also the areas around them and the communities that live and work within these areas. There have since been additional international and national designations, covering much of Dublin Bay, to ensure the protection of its water quality and biodiversity. To fulfil these broader management aims for the ecosystem, the Biosphere was expanded in 2015. The Biosphere now covers Dublin Bay, reflecting its significant environmental, economic, cultural and tourism importance, and extends to over 300km² to include the bay, the shore and nearby residential areas.

On the Southside at Dun Laoghaire, there is the National Yacht Club, Royal St. George Yacht Club, Royal Irish Yacht Club and Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club as well as Dublin Bay Sailing Club. In the city centre, there is Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club. On the Northside of Dublin, there is Clontarf Yacht and Boat Club and Sutton Dinghy Club. While not on Dublin Bay, Howth Yacht Club is the major north Dublin Sailing centre.

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