Displaying items by tag: Bundoran
The dance, held this year at the Allingham Arms Hotel in Bundoran, is the flagship fundraising event of the volunteer crew and has been a staple of the annual event calendar for more than 40 years.
Award-winning country music singer Robert Mizzell, originally from Louisiana and now based in Ireland, will perform on the night and is looking forward to playing the event.
“Since I’ve moved to Ireland I’ve become very aware of the amazing work the volunteers of the RNLI do so selflessly,” he said. “It is my great pleasure to be invited back to play at their annual dance this year. I look forward to seeing many of the supporters of this great charity on the night.”
Event director Cormac McGurren is reminding supporters that not only is it a great night of music, but there are some great prizes in the monster raffle, too.
“Local businesses have once again been so generous in donating prizes for us for the raffle and we would like to thank traders in Bundoran and Ballyshannon for their great support. A special thanks to Mr Oilman who is donating €250 worth of oil for our door prize on the night, too.”
The dance will take place on Friday 31st January with Kieran McAree on stage from 9pm and Robert Mizzell on stage from 11pm.
Proceeds from the dance will fund ongoing training of the volunteer crew based at Bundoran Lifeboat Station, who are on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week, serving the entire Donegal Bay area for marine emergencies.
Tickets are just €15 and are on sale now from all crew members, the Allingham Arms, Bundoran Tourist Office, BMG Hardware Bundoran, O’Neill’s Next Door Off Licence Ballyshannon and on the door on the night.
More information on the lifeboat service in Bundoran can be found on the station’s Facebook page.
The rescue was acknowledged by the RNLI with a written letter of commendation from the charity’s then chief of operations.
On 28 December 1998, a surfer raised the alarm that two others could not get ashore. Helm Daimon Fergus takes up the story:
“Tony McGowan, our lifeboat operations manager, contacted the Irish Coast Guard in Malin Head and had our volunteer crew paged. Tony Cummins was at the helm along with Damien McNamara and myself.
“Our lifeboat, an Atlantic 75, was launched and underway within seven minutes. There was a south easterly Force 5 offshore wind and a swell of 22ft at the time.
“The main challenge was the swell which was breaking over the breakwater and into the channel from the boathouse. I remember Tony had to time the swells and judge the right moment to clear the channel.”
Once clear, the lifeboat ran before a quartering sea and reached the casualties at 4.22pm.
“We had been guided to the exact location by a shore party sent from the lifeboat station,” Daimon says. “We swiftly managed to recover the two casualties and one surf board just to the north of the surf line.
“As we came back and approached the station, Tony once again had to time our return carefully because of the breaking swells in the approach channel. I won’t forget the fact that the first surfer squeezed my hand so tight that he bent the thick silver ring on my right hand into my finger and the ring had to be cut off when we got back to the station.”
In commending the crew, the RNLI’s letter to the station read: “Although this service was short in duration, all those involved are to be commended for the alacrity of the launch, the contribution of the shore party, as well as the seamanship exhibited by Tony Cummins.”
One of the rescued surfers was Mark Ponsonby from Letterkenny, who says he will be eternally grateful for the speedy launch of the lifeboat that day.
“It’s been over 20 years now since my brother and myself were rescued by the RNLI in the sea at Bundoran. I often wonder what would have happened to us or become of us if it wasn’t for the timely interaction and rescue by the RNLI services that day.
“In a matter of minutes, they had answered the emergency call and had launched the boat. The Irish Coast Guard helicopter was also tasked to come to our aid.
“The conditions we found ourselves in were extreme and treacherous and the timing was critical for that rescue as the light was fading fast, yet the RNLI volunteers didn’t hesitate to get to us as fast as possible. My family will forever be grateful to the RNLI on that day and will never forget what they did for my brother and me that day.”
Now, as the current volunteer lifeboat crew prepare for Christmas 2019, they too will be ready and willing to respond should their pagers go off.
For Daimon, who has been a volunteer for 25 years, Christmas is no different to any other time of year: “We’ll still be on call ready to save lives and delay our own Christmas celebrations. We couldn’t do what we do without the support of the public.
“The RNLI has experienced a shortfall in funds, but we are rescuing more people than ever before. We are facing the Perfect Storm and are calling on people to make a donation this Christmas to ensure we can continue saving lives at sea.”
To support the RNLI’s Perfect Storm appeal this Christmas, helping to ensure the charity’s brave volunteers can continue saving lives at sea, visit RNLI.org/ThePerfectStorm
Four people have been rescued from an island off the Sligo coast after their vessel washed up on rocks.
Bundoran RNLI’s volunteer crew launched to the incident at Inishmurray Island yesterday afternoon (Sunday 3 November) along with the Irish Coast Guard’s Sligo-based helicopter Rescue 118, which airlifted the casualties to hospital
The RNLI says the lifeboat made efforts to recover their boat from the rocks but due to a three-metre swell, it was decided to leave it in place.
Later, volunteer helm Rory O’Connor said: “The four casualties were lucky on this occasion and we are thankful that they alerted the coastguard when they did. This was another callout with a good outcome.”
Receiving the call from Malin Head Coast Guard shortly before 1pm, the lifeboat crew, who had just returned from exercise, set out for the scene at the Bullockmore west cardinal marker just west of St John’s Point.
Arriving around 1.15pm, they found that the main dive boat had broken down and was unable to recover six divers who were in the water.
Four divers were recovered onto the Bundoran lifeboat, with two others recovered to the Killybegs boat and subsequently transferred to a passing fishing boat who had responded to the coastguard’s initial call for assistance in the area.
In total eight divers were accounted for and safely transported back to Killybegs.
Commenting on the callout, his first as a qualified helmsman, Rory O’Connor said: “We are delighted that there was a successful conclusion to this shout.
“Thankfully once the dive boat realised that there was a problem they contacted the coastguard immediately and got ourselves, Killybegs Coast Guard Delta and Rescue 118 launched. We would always encourage all boats to check in with the coastguard before setting out.”
Brothers Oisin and Nathan Cassidy, from Kinlough in Co Leitrim, recently travelled to the RNLI College in Poole, Dorset, to complete its Crew Emergency Procedures course.
Oisin and Nathan were inspired to join up as volunteer crew by their father James, who has been a helm with Bundoran RNLI for 18 years.
The course sees new lifeboat volunteers being trained in a variety of scenarios, such as how to deal with fires aboard lifeboats, and how to ‘abandon ship’ in the event of an emergency — complete with a four-metre jump into water.
Others include team survival swimming, coping in a liferaft in simulated darkness, how to right a capsized inshore lifeboat, and the importance of lifejackets.
It also includes sessions on the correct use of flares, fire extinguishers and throw bags.
More than 3,000 RNLI volunteer crew members have received training funded by some €2.8 million
“It was inevitable that myself and Oisin would join the RNLI,” said Nathan. “Since an early age we’ve been around the lifeboat station with Dad and have seen the great work that he and all the other volunteers do week in, week out.
“We are both very proud to be part of crew at Bundoran RNLI and look forward to help save lives at sea in the Bundoran and Donegal Bay area.”
Nathan and Oisin’s training took place in the Sea Survival Centre at the RNLI College, where they was joined by other RNLI volunteer crew from around Ireland and the UK.
The training is funded by Lloyd’s Register Foundation, a charitable foundation that helps to protect life and property by supporting engineering-related education, public engagement and the application of research.
More than 3,000 RNLI volunteer crew members have received training funded by some €2.8 million from the foundation since 2008.
In a statement, the organisers said: “It is with regret that we have decided to cancel this Sunday’s soapbox race event.
“Following consultation with weather charts and Met Éireann, the forecast is not favourable to run an event outdoors. For the comfort and safety of our volunteers, participants and spectators the organising committee has made the difficult decision to cancel the event.
“We are sorry to cause any disappointment, particularly to those who have already built soapboxes. We would like to thank those who had volunteered their time to help out at the event.
“Our annual flag day street collection will go ahead on Sunday and we thank you in advance for your generosity and continuing support of Bundoran RNLI Lifeboat.”
Now in its eighth year, the event is organised and hosted by the volunteer crew of the Bundoran RNLI lifeboat and is a major fundraiser for the charity.
The event is expected to attract as many as 2,000 soapbox enthusiasts and their supporters with race winning between 1pm and 4pm, weather permitting.
The prize up for grabs is the highly coveted Perpetual Cup and 12 months of bragging rights.
And the ever-popular €1,000 ball race will also take place directly after the soapbox final has been run, with balls on sale at just €5 from lunchtime on the day.
Event director Cormac McGurren says that the crew is looking forward to the day.
“The soapbox race is always the talk of the station for the weeks and months before it happens. It’s a fun family day out with lots of thrills and spills expected.
“We would like to thank in advance all of our sponsors, prize donors and local volunteers who are helping to run the event and also to sell the balls.”
Those wishing to race a soapbox on the day are encouraged to register online, though last-minute registrations on the day will be accepted.
There will be a number of traffic restrictions in place this Sunday to facilitate the race. Astoria Road will be closed from 8am till 7pm on Sunday at the junction with Main Street.
Traffic for Waterworld, Bundoran Adventure Park and Ozanam House should use Promenade Road and Atlantic Way. Traffic for Main Beach, Great Northern Hotel and Bundoran Golf Club should use Sea Road. Main beach car park will be open for parking as normal (with access via Sea Road).
Volunteer crew members at Bundoran RNLI recently undertook an intensive casualty care course, receiving specialised training to enhance their lifesaving skills at sea.
The course ran by RNLI trainer Jen Forsyth, focused on effective hands-on treatment rather than complex theory or diagnosis and provided crew with the skills to confidently treat casualties.
Maritime search and rescue medicine is a specialised field and the RNLI’s unique course prepares lifeboat crew to manage the situations that are encountered in the operational environment.
"Maritime search and rescue medicine is a specialised field"
During the training each participant had to pass both a written and a practical scenario to demonstrate their individual skill. At the end of the course all crew took part in final practical scenarios where teams of casualty carers treated multiple casualties.
Speaking following the training, Shane O’Neill, Bundoran RNLI Lifeboat Training Coordinator, said: ‘Our crew is prepared to drop everything and risk their lives to save others at a moment’s notice. Their lifesaving work is essential, often difficult and sometimes dangerous. And with only one in 10 volunteers joining the RNLI from a professional maritime occupation, training is especially important. Here in Bundoran, our lifeboat crew train together every week, both at sea and ashore.
‘Casualty care is a crucial link in the search and rescue chain of survival that allows lifeboat crews to save lives at sea. Casualties have to be treated and kept alive often in a sometimes unforgiving and hostile environment until the casualty can be handed into the care of our emergency services colleagues. Our crew will continue to practice and hone these skills on a regular basis through scenario based training.’
The Co Donegal lifeboat crew received the call for help at 8.30pm to a 30ft fishing vessel with three people onboard that had suffered engine failure seven miles off Innismurray.
Immediately diverting to the scene, the lifeboat crew — helm Brian Faulkner and crewmembers Mark Vaughan, Fergal Muller and Chris Fox — reached the vessel at 9.10pm and established a tow.
Conditions were ideal for the callout with a low swell and little wind. However, due to the size of the fishing vessel, the tow took a number of hours.
On reaching Mullaghmore, the volunteer lifeboat crew were replaced by their colleagues after spending the evening at sea in cold conditions. It was after 1.30am before the lifeboat crew reached home.
Commenting on the callout, Bundoran RNLI lifeboat operations manager Captain Tony McGowan said: “Our exercise night turned into a long callout for the crew and I want to thank them for their great work.
“Towing a vessel to safety can be a long and arduous job for a lifeboat crew but it’s an important one and we are happy to be able to assist.
“I also want to thank our volunteer lifeboat crew’s families who wait patiently at home and support the work of the RNLI.”
The volunteers launched after a member of the public raised the alarm, having spotted someone they thought to be in difficulty and waving their arm off Rougey Point in Bundoran.
Weather conditions at the time were blowing a light south-easterly wind and there was a three-metre swell.
Once on scene, the lifeboat crew observed that the surfer, while not in difficulty or in any immediate danger, was in a challenging part of the sea and some distance away from the shore.
The crew made the decision to take the teenager onboard and transport him safely back to Bundoran Lifeboat Station.
Speaking following the callout, O’Kelly said: “We would like to commend the member of the public who raised the alarm this afternoon — that is always the right thing to do if you see someone you think or know to be in difficulty.
“While this surfer was not in any immediate danger, he was some distance from shore so we made a call to assist him safely back to shore.”
The kitesurfer, who had come ashore at Kilkee, was said to be suffering the effects of cold after spending as much as two-and-a-half hours at sea and was taken to hospital.