Displaying items by tag: Arklow
It was a long night at sea for Arklow RNLI on Tuesday evening (4 August) as its volunteers launched to assist three people on a yacht in difficulty in the Irish Sea some 25 miles off the Co Wicklow town.
The yacht was intercepted just north of the Arklow Bank amid swells of up to five metres, and its crew were suffering from fatigue and sea sickness.
Worsening conditions meant the yacht was not able to make headway either by sail or its own engine tower, so it was taken under tow by the lifeboat to Wicklow Harbour as the safest and shortest option — eventually arriving at 1.15am, more than six hours after launch.
Lifeboat coxswain Brendan Dillon commented: “Given the prevailing conditions at sea, this could have ended very differently.”
An industry source said, reports Independent.ie, that Arklow had won out chiefly because it was closer to the site than Wicklow Port, while Belfast Port was the most likely construction hub for the project, the source added.
In a joint announcement, SSE and Wicklow County Council said Arklow's south dock will be redeveloped as the base for supporting future operations of Arklow Bank. They expect 80 full-time jobs at the facility once the second phase is completed in 2025.
The existing seven-turbine farm at Arklow Bank - built in 2004 as an early test of offshore technology - currently is Ireland's only offshore wind farm and generates 25 megawatts. That is one-fortieth of one gigawatt, the goal set by the State for Ireland's offshore wind generation by 2025.
The second phase, using more powerful turbines, is designed to generate 520 megawatts using 80 to 100 turbines at the site along a swathe of the Irish Sea some 7 kilometres to 13 kilometres offshore.
However, SSE first must identify a construction hub for assembling the massive turbines. No Republic of Ireland port currently has the capacity to host these operations, which require 80-tonne cranes, reinforced quaysides and large warehouses.
An industry source said Belfast Port was most likely to be the construction hub, although a final decision will be made nearer the planned start of construction in 2023.
For further reading click the newspaper's report here.
The all-weather lifeboat, under coxswain Ned Dillon and crew Brendan Dillon, Geoff Kearnes, Eddie McElheron, Leigh Downey and Matt Heaney, were paged at 3.20pm and launched immediately.
Upon arrival at the scene some two miles east of Arklow, one of the kayakers and his boat were transferred to the lifeboat, while the other was escorted back to Arklow South Beach.
Speaking following the callout, Mark Corcoran, Arklow RNLI’s community safety officer, said: “Thankfully we were able to assist these kayakers safely back to shore.
“Given the good weather and the relaxation of some the Covid-19 protocols, there are a lot more people around and on the water, we would like to reiterate our message that if you are going on or in the water.
“Always carry a means of calling for help, always wear a lifejacket and other appropriate protection, always check the weather and tides before going to sea and please Respect The Water.
“Arklow RNLI remains on call and is fully operational during the coronavirus pandemic. While there is no crew training or exercises taking place, our volunteers are here if and when our community need us.”
The RNLI has issued advice with the Irish Coast Guard to ask people to avoid using the water for exercise while restrictions are in place. This is to minimise the risk to search and rescue volunteer crews, helicopter crew and other frontline emergency services of being unintentionally exposed to the coronavirus.
While the community was shining a light in support of frontline workers this past Easter weekend, Arklow RNLI’s volunteer lifeboat crew were making their way to the lifeboat station following reports of a distress flare being sighted off the coast.
Pagers were activated at 10.20pm on Saturday night (11 April) and within a few minutes Arklow RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat Ger Tigchlearr was launched and under way.
Initial reports suggested the sighting was south of Arklow. With a number of fishing vessels working in the area, the lifeboat crew checked with them; none were in distress but they reported a sighting further north.
The Arklow lifeboat proceeded on a track north with full beam searchlights and all hands searching the darkness. With nothing yet located it was decided to deploy two white illumination flares to aid in location of any potential casualty vessel or persons.
Later in the search, the lifeboat crew were joined by Rescue 117, the Irish Coast Guard helicopter from Waterford, who had been on scene at an incident in Wexford Harbour immediately prior, as well as coastguard shore crews from Arklow and Courtown.
Following a lengthy search by all involved and with nothing located, the operation was stood down and all hands returned safely.
Following the search, Mark Corcoran, Arklow RNLI press officer and community safety officer, said: “As always our volunteers responded quickly to the reported flare sighting. I’d like to pay tribute to all who responded and were involved in this search.
“Despite the current restrictions, all of our volunteers are continuing to put themselves on the frontline.
“This sighting may have been a Chinese lantern or indeed someone letting off a flare in good faith and while this would have been done with good intent, we would ask people to refrain from this to avoid further false alarms and the need for our volunteers to be put at risk.”
As TheJournal.ie reports, it’s understood that a large wave crashed against the harbour wall and washed two people from the top of the pier 15 feet to the lower deck.
Neither individual was washed into the sea but both were hospitalised for treatment. Community safety officer Mark Corcoran reminded the public to ‘stay back, stay high and stay dry’ when walking near the coast.
The incident came just hours after the lifeboat charity and the Irish Coast Guard issued their annual safety message for the Christmas and New Year period.
#Rowing: Ireland’s Sionna Healy placed seventh in the women’s solo at the World Coastal Championships in Hong Kong this morning. In tough, choppy, conditions, the Arklow woman clung on to sixth for most of a race which was won by Diana Dymchenko of Ukraine. Mette Petersen of Denmark finished fastest of the entire field and took sixth, while Castletownbere’s Miriam Sheehan also finished well to take eighth.
The best-placed men’s crews for Ireland were Myross, who took tenth in the men’s coxed quadruple, and Bantry’s Andrew Hurley, who was 13th in the men’s solo.
Belfast Boat Club’s women’s coxed quad took 11th in their A Final.
World Coastal Rowing Championships, Hong Kong – Day Three (Ireland crews)
Quadruple coxed – A Final: 10 Myross 24 minutes 45.44 seconds. B Final (18th to 31st): 4 Galley Flash/Kilmacsimon 17:24.36.
Double – A Final: 13 Arklow (J Whooley, A Goodison) 27:01.10.
Solo – A Final: 13 Bantry (A Hurley) 30:52.53; 16 Galley Flash (J Harrington) 32.20.18.
Quadruple, coxed – A Final: 11 Belfast BC 28:06.90; 15 Castletownbere/Myross (Ireland Two) 28:45.75.
Double – B Final (17th to 29th): 1 Castletownshend 20:46.01; 4 Arklow (Kinsella, Kinsella) 22:03.93, 5 Arklow (Jordan, Reid) 22:21.76.
Solo – A Final: 7 Arklow (S Healy) 32:45.91, 8 Castletownbere (M Sheehan) 32:53.20; 12 Arklow (X Jordan) 33:25.40; 14 Galley Flash (N Hayes) 34:03.40; 16 Arkow (MA Kent) 37:22.22.
Double – B Final (17th to 32nd): 11 Kilmacsimon 21:04.85.
#Rowing: Ireland will have crews in five A Finals at the World Coastal Rowing Championships in Hong Kong on Sunday. Men’s crews came through well on Saturday, qualifying two solo scullers and Myross in the coxed quadruple. The Arklow double of Alan Goodison and John Whooley had made it through as a fastest loser in the double in Friday’s session. Two women’s coxed quadruples and four women’s solo scullers had also made it through on Friday.
World Coastal Rowing Championships, Hong Kong, Day Two (Ireland crews)
Quadruple, coxed – First Eight to A Final; rest to B Final: Heat One: 7 Myross 16:22.17; 11 Galley Flash/Kilmacsimon 17:34.57.
Double – B Final: 7 Kilmacsimon/Ring 19:35.10; 13 Courtmacsherry 21:05.76; 14 St Michael’s, Dublin 21:41.30.
Solo – First Five to A Final; 7 plus to B Final; 11 plus B Final or eliminated: Heat Two: 13 Portmagee 23:14.19. Heat Three: 3 Bantry (A Hurley) 20:02.92; 5 Galley Flash (J Harrington) 20:40.77; 13 Myross 25:21.83.
Double - First Eight to A Final; rest to B Final – Heat Two: 9 Castletownshend 20:36.64; 11 Arklow (Kinsella/Kinsella) 21:47.40; 13 Arklow (Jordan/Reid) 22:54.85.
Double – Heat One – 7 to 10 to B Final: 10 Kilmacsimon 19:21.81
#Rowing: Five Ireland entrants in the women’s solo single made it through heats into Sunday’s A Final of the World Coastal Rowing Championships in Hong Kong. Miriam Sheehan of Castletownbere placed best, taking third in the first heat, one place ahead of Sionna Healy. The Arklow sculler was one of three from her club to make it to the A Final in this class. Both women’s coxed quadruples, from Belfast and a composite of Castletownbere and Myross, also qualified for the A Final.
The Ireland men’s crews found the going tougher. Only the top five in the heats of the men’s double were guaranteed places in the A Final. John Whooley and Alan Goodison finished sixth in their heat - making it through. The three other Ireland crews missed out.
World Coastal Rowing Championships, Hong Kong – Day One, Heats (Ireland crews)
Double (Five to A Final) – Heat One: 6 Arklow 19:04.39; 10 St Michael’s, Dublin 21:28.54.
Heat Three: 8 Kilmacsimon/Ring 21:15.37; 11 Courtmacsherry 22:53.45.
Quadruple, coxed (Eight to A Final) – Heat One: 7 Belfast BC 19:33.28.
Heat Two: 7 Castletownbere/Myross 20:40.31.
Solo (Eight to Final) – Heat One: 3 Castletownbere (M Sheehan) 22:07.48; 4 Arklow (S Healy) 22:16.07; 7 Galley Flash (N Hayes) 23:13.68; 8 Arklow (MA Kent) 24:41.77.
Heat Two: 6 Arklow (X Jordan) 24:02.30.
The Ger Tigchelaar was launched to reports of a fishing vessel with three aboard which had lost propulsion and was adrift one mile north-east of Arklow Harbour.
In south-westerly Force 4-5 winds and with moderate worsening sea conditions, the casualty vessel was located and, once on scene, Arklow RNLI volunteers secured a rescue towline and proceeded to tow the fishing vessel back into Arklow where all hands came ashore safely.
The second call out came later that evening at 6.20pm when reports had come in that a person was missing on a kayak somewhere north of Arklow.
The crew launched the lifeboat immediately and commenced a search. As they proceeded north along the coast, further reports came in that a kayak had been sighted on or near the beach at Ennereilly Strand, north of Arklow.
The lifeboat continued the search north as it headed for the reported position at Ennereilly.
In the meantime, some of Arklow RNLI’s volunteers had commenced a shoreline search to see if the person had managed to get ashore separate from the kayak.
A short time later, another volunteer located the owner of the kayak who had made his way ashore quite safely and was en route back to Ennereilly Strand to pick up his kayak.
The search was then stood down and the lifeboat returned to station.
Following the callouts, Arklow RNLI press officer Mark Corcoran said: “Thankfully, we were able to bring three people safely back to shore and given the worsening conditions and with the casualty vessel adrift near the rocks this could easily have had a much worse ending.
“Our second launch in more challenging conditions followed a report of a missing kayaker — thankfully he had made it back to shore safely and was en-route back to collect his beached kayak when he was located on shore.
“Thanks to the members of the public who made the report and all of our volunteers for their time in challenging conditions and a special thanks and congratulations to Sinead Myler on completing her first call out today.”
The volunteer lifeboat crew left their families on Easter Sunday to answer the callout, bringing the all-weather lifeboat Ger Tigchlearr just north of Arklow Harbour where the casualty vessel had been reported adrift and without power.
The jetski, with two people aboard, was quickly located off the back of Arklow's North Pier, dangerously close to the rocky shoreline.
The two people aboard were immediately recovered onto the lifeboat and a line was secured to the jetski to tow it back to shore.
In Larne, RNLI volunteers were called out twice on Sunday evening to people in difficulty.
In the first callout, both the all-weather and inshore lifeboats were called to aid two kayakers who had overturned near Browns Bay just off Islandmagee.
Larne RNLI launched into a calm sea at 5,45pm with the inshore lifeboat, Terry, tasked to bring the kayakers safely to shore, while the all-weather lifeboat Dr John McSparran was tasked to recover the kayaks left behind.
After a successful recovery of both casualties and their equipment, Larne RNLI helm Pamela Leitch noted: “The two kayakers were wearing buoyancy aids; they also remembered to stay with their kayaks which made it easier for us to identify them and bring them ashore.”
The second callout involved the all-weather lifeboat towing a 26ft sailing boat which had run aground at the East Maidens lighthouse.
One of the two people onboard had asked to dock close to the Maidens so they could have a look around. However, while they were the docked the tide ebbed and the boat was left on rocks.
The remaining crew member was able to use their VHF radio to call for assistance from Belfast Coastguard, who requested the launch of the all-weather lifeboat.
When Larne’s volunteers reached the boat, they found that it had moved off the rocks and that no damage had occurred to the hull.
However, it was suggested that the casualty boat follow the all-weather lifeboat into Larne to assess any further damage.
As both boats were making their way into the Port of Larne, a tow line was established as the casualty vessel was experiencing some engine troubles. The vessel was then towed to a mooring at East Antrim Boat Club.
Meanwhile, in Kilmore Quay, the local RNLI lifeboat was alerted by Dublin Coast Guard at 5.25pm that an 11m boat with two people on board had lost engine power three-and-a-half miles south of Bag-N-Bun Head to the west of Kilmore Quay.
Conditions were near calm at the time with restricted visibility due to coastal fog. Visibility was down to one tenth of a mile at times.
The volunteer crew made best speed towards the casualty vessel, arriving alongside twenty minutes later. A tow line was passed over and the vessel was towed back to Kilmore Quay, which took just under an hour to complete.
“Given the fantastic weather we’ve had this weekend, we’ve seen higher numbers of people coming back to the beaches and putting their boats and other craft back in the water, earlier than usual,” said Mark Corcoran, community safety officer at Arklow RNLI.
“We’d like to remind people to always respect the water, wear a lifejacket and carry a means of calling for help when going out on the water.”