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Displaying items by tag: World Rowing Championships

#Rowing: A stirring finish saw the Ireland lightweight quadruple elbow their way into the semi-final of the World Under-23 Championships in Rotterdam today. The young crew of Fintan McCarthy, Shane O'Connell, Stephen O'Connor and Colm Hennessy clung on to third behind impressive Germany and Sweden despite a big challenge by Canada.

World Rowing Championships, Rotterdam (Selected Results; Irish interest)

Men

Under-23 Lightweight Pair - Heat Two (First Three to A/B Semi-Final; rest to Repechages): 1 Turkey 6:39.80, 2 Greece 6:40.70, 3 Ireland (S Mulvaney, D O’Malley) 6:45.09.  

Under-23 Quadruple - Heat Three (First two A/B Semi-Final; rest to Repechages) 1 Australia 5:52.01, 2 Italy 5:53.31; 5 Ireland (D Buckley, J Casey, P Boomer, S McKeown) 6:15.47.

Under-23 Lightweight Quadruple - Heat One (First Three to A/B Semi-Finals; rest to Repechages): 1 Germany 6:10.05, 2 Sweden 6:11.08, 3 Ireland (F McCarthy, S O'Connell, S O'Connor, C Hennessy) 6:12.63.

Published in Rowing

#Rowing: Paul O’Donovan is set to have an extraordinary August, competing at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro and the World Rowing Championships in Rotterdam. He is named the Afloat Rower of the Month for his achievements in June. Paul and his brother, Gary, continued their impressive run in the lightweight double sculls. They took fourth in the World Cup regatta in Poznan, Poland. They placed ahead of Britain, who were silver medallists at the World Championships in 2015, in both the repechage and the final. Germany, who were sixth last year, could not qualify from the repechage, which was won by Ireland in the fastest time they have done in a race. They head off to a block of training in Spain having moved from 11th in the world last year to a ranking of 5th in the bookies’ odds for Rio.

 Paul O’Donovan has been chosen to compete in the lightweight single in Rotterdam. In a shoot-out with Gary at Cork Regatta in the senior single he proved his credentials with a big win. Despite being a lightweight, he is the best single sculler in Ireland.   

Rower of the Month awards: The judging panel is made up of Liam Gorman, rowing correspondent of The Irish Times, and David O'Brien, editor of Afloat magazine. Monthly awards for achievements during the year will appear on afloat.ie and the overall national award will be presented to the person or crew who, in the judges' opinion, achieved the most notable results in, or made the most significant contribution to rowing during 2016. Keep a monthly eye on progress and watch our 2016 champions list grow.

Published in Rowing

#ROWING: Ireland’s encouraging campaign at the World Rowing Championships ended with another remarkable result today. Sanita Puspure took fourth in the women’s single sculls, just 1.17 seconds off a medal in this high-profile discipline. Emma Twigg of New Zealand won gold, vanquishing her Australian rival Kim Crow, who took silver. Duan Jingli of China made third her own for the second half of the race. But Puspure, who was fourth by four seconds at 1500 metres, threw everything she had into the last 250 metres.  She closed fast on the Chinese and was just half a boatlength behind her on the line.  

World Rowing Championships, Day Eight (Irish interest, selected results):

Men

Lightweight Four – A Final: 1 Denmark 5:47.15, 2 New Zealand 5:48.76, 3 Britain (M Aldred, P Chambers, R Chambers, C Bartley) 5:49.58.

Women

Double Sculls – B Final (Places 7 to 12): 1 Netherlands 5:06.20, 2 Russia 5:09.13, 3 Germany 5:09.17, 4 Ukraine 5:14.12, 5 Ireland (H Hannigan, M Dukarska) 5:16.36, 6 Denmark 5:16.55.

Single Sculls – A Final: 1 New Zealand (E Twigg) 7:14.95, 2 Australia (K Crow) 7:17.33, 3 China (Jingli Duan) 7:22.57; 4 Ireland (S Puspure) 7:23.74, 5 Austria 7:32.04, 6 Russia 7:36.64.

 

Published in Rowing

#ROWING: Ireland’s women’s double of Monika Dukarska and Helen Hannigan (Walshe) finished fifth in their B Final at the World Rowing Championships in Amsterdam this morning. The race was won by the Netherlands, who got out in front early and held off challenges by Germany and Russia. Ireland started well but slipped back to sixth position. However, the crew dug in and won a battle with Denmark for fifth. They finished well, closing up on fourth-placed Ukraine coming up to the line. The placing puts Ireland 11th in this Olympic-class event.

World Rowing Championships, Day Eight (Irish interest, selected results):

Women

Double Sculls – B Final (Places 7 to 12): 1 Netherlands 5:06.20, 2 Russia 5:09.13, 3 Germany 5:09.17, 4 Ukraine 5:14.12, 5 Ireland (H Hannigan, M Dukarska) 5:16.36, 6 Denmark 5:16.55.

Published in Rowing

#ROWING: Paul O’Donovan finished fourth in an extraordinarily-fast A Final of the lightweight single sculls at the World Rowing Championships in Amsterdam today. The race winner, Marcello Miani of Italy, set the world’s best time, and second-placed Lars Hartig of Germany also finished inisde the old record in the tailwind conditions. O’Donovan (20) was the slowest over the first 500 metres. He came from behind to pick off Pedro Fraga of Portugal and Perry Ward of Australia, but even his outstanding speed in the closing stages could not bridge the gap to Michael Schmid of Switzerland, who took bronze.

 The world's best time had earlier been breached by American Andrew Campbell Junior of the United Sates in the C Final, but Miani and Hartig bettered it again.

World Rowing Championships, Amsterdam, Day Six (Irish interest, selected results)

Men

Lightweight Four – Semi-Final (First Three to A Final): 1 Denmark 5:43.16 (world best time), 2 Britian (M Aldred, P Chambers, R Chambers, C Bartley) 5:43.97, 3 New Zealand 5:47.95.

Lightweight Pair – B Final (Places 7 to 12): 1 China (Zhenwei Hou, Fangbing Zhang) 6:28.29, 2 Bulgaria 6:30.40, 3 Netherlands 6:31.01, 4 Ireland (M O’Donovan, N Kenny) 6:34.06, 5 Austria 6:37.65, 6 Chile 6:43.01.

Lightweight Single Sculls – A Final: 1 Italy (M Miani) 6:43.37, 2 Germany (L Hartig) 6:46.73, 3 Switzerland (M Schmid) 6:50.88; 4 Ireland (P O’Donovan) 6:50.88, 5 Australia 6:59.84, 6 Portugal 7:07.94.

Women

Four – B Final (Places 7 to 10): 1 Netherlands 6:28.95, 2 Italy 6:35.51, 3 Germany 6:37.90, 4 Ireland (M O’Neill, E Tormey, A Keogh, B O’Brien) 6:43.62.

Double – A/B Semi-Final (First Three to A Final; rest to B Final) 1 Australia (O Aldersey, S Kehoe) 6:37.31 (new World Best Time), 2 Lithuania (D Vistartaite, M Valciukaite) 6:30.34, 3 New Zealand (F Bourke, Z Stevenson) 6:43.34; 4 Netherlands 6:46.40, 5 Ukraine 6:59.20, 6 Ireland (H Hannigan, M Dukarska) 7:14.75.

Lightweight Double Sculls – C Final (Places 13 to 18): 1 Russia (D Stepochkina, O Arkadova) 6:58.21, 2 Ireland (C Lambe, D Walsh) 7:00.11, 3 Denmark 7:03.49, 4 Switzerland 7:03.51, 5 Belarus 7:09.08, 6 Greece 7:14.20.

Single – A/B Semi-Final (First Three to A Final; rest to B Final)

Ireland (S Puspure): 1 New Zealand (E Twigg) 7:18.68, 2 Austria (M Lobnig) 7:23.93, 3 Ireland (S Puspure) 7:25.61; 4 United States 7:29.18, 5 Lithuania 7:33.09, 6 Czech Republic 7:43.150.

Published in Rowing

#ROWING: Sanita Puspure secured an A Final place for Ireland with an admirable performance in difficult conditions in the semi-final of the women’s single sculls at the World Championships in Amsterdam today. Puspure fought her way into third place behind the impressive Emma Twigg of New Zealand and Magdalena Lobnig of Austria early on and held this down the course in choppy water. She refused to yield to a strong challenge from Genevra Stone of the United States and closed up on Lobnig in the run to the line.

The Ireland women’s double of Helen Hannigan and Monika Dukarska finished sixth in a record-breaking semi-final. Sally Kehoe and Olympia Aldersey of Australia won in a new world’s best time. Ireland started quite well, but were not in real contention for a place in the A Final.

There was also a new record in the lightweight men’s four semi-final. Denmark ousted their own country’s great crew of the 1990s from the record books while second-placed Britain, with the Chambers brothers, Peter and Richard, in the two and three seats, also came in under the old record.

World Rowing Championships, Amsterdam, Day Six (Irish interest, selected results)

Men

Lightweight Four – Semi-Final (First Three to A Final): 1 Denmark 5:43.16 (world best time), 2 Britian (M Aldred, P Chambers, R Chambers, C Bartley) 5:43.97, 3 New Zealand 5:47.95.

Lightweight Pair – B Final (Places 7 to 12): 1 China (Zhenwei Hou, Fangbing Zhang) 6:28.29, 2 Bulgaria 6:30.40, 3 Netherlands 6:31.01, 4 Ireland (M O’Donovan, N Kenny) 6:34.06, 5 Austria 6:37.65, 6 Chile 6:43.01.

Women

Four – B Final (Places 7 to 10): 1 Netherlands 6:28.95, 2 Italy 6:35.51, 3 Germany 6:37.90, 4 Ireland (M O’Neill, E Tormey, A Keogh, B O’Brien) 6:43.62.

Double – A/B Semi-Final (First Three to A Final; rest to B Final) 1 Australia (O Aldersey, S Kehoe) 6:37.31 (new World Best Time), 2 Lithuania (D Vistartaite, M Valciukaite) 6:30.34, 3 New Zealand (F Bourke, Z Stevenson) 6:43.34; 4 Netherlands 6:46.40, 5 Ukraine 6:59.20, 6 Ireland (H Hannigan, M Dukarska) 7:14.75.

Lightweight Double Sculls – C Final (Places 13 to 18): 1 Russia (D Stepochkina, O Arkadova) 6:58.21, 2 Ireland (C Lambe, D Walsh) 7:00.11, 3 Denmark 7:03.49, 4 Switzerland 7:03.51, 5 Belarus 7:09.08, 6 Greece 7:14.20.

Single – A/B Semi-Final (First Three to A Final; rest to B Final): 1 New Zealand (E Twigg) 7:18.68, 2 Austria (M Lobnig) 7:23.93, 3 Ireland (S Puspure) 7:25.61; 4 United States 7:29.18, 5 Lithuania 7:33.09, 6 Czech Republic 7:43.150.

Published in Rowing

#ROWING: Ireland’s men’s lightweight pair finished fourth in their B Final, 10th overall, at the World Rowing Championships in Amsterdam today. China won in a fast time in tailwind conditions, with Bulgaria and the Netherlands battling each other and finishing second and third. Ireland’s Niall Kenny and Mark O’Donovan were fifth through the middle stages but won their own battle with Austria to take a clear fourth.

The women’s four of Marie O'Neill, Emily Tormey, Aifric Keogh and Barbara O'Brien were fourth in their B Final, behind the Netherlands, who won impressively from Italy, with Germany third.

World Rowing Championships, Amsterdam, Day Six (Irish interest, selected results)

Men

Lightweight Pair – B Final (Places 7 to 12): 1 China (Zhenwei Hou, Fangbing Zhang) 6:28.29, 2 Bulgaria 6:30.40, 3 Netherlands 6:31.01, 4 Ireland (M O’Donovan, N Kenny) 6:34.06, 5 Austria 6:37.65, 6 Chile 6:43.01.

Women

Four – B Final (Places 7 to 10): 1 Netherlands 6:28.95, 2 Italy 6:35.51, 3 Germany 6:37.90, 4 Ireland (M O’Neill, E Tormey, A Keogh, B O’Brien) 6:43.62.

Lightweight Double Sculls – C Final (Places 13 to 18): 1 Russia (D Stepochkina, O Arkadova) 6:58.21, 2 Ireland (C Lambe, D Walsh) 7:00.11, 3 Denmark 7:03.49, 4 Switzerland 7:03.51, 5 Belarus 7:09.08, 6 Greece 7:14.20.

Published in Rowing

#ROWING: Ireland’s lightweight double scull of Claire Lambe and Denise Walsh came second to Russia in their C Final at the World Rowing Championships in Amsterdam this morning. The Russian crew of Diana Stepochkina and Olga Arkadova led all the way down the course, with Ireland snapping at their heels. But the Irish fell short by just under a boat length. The result places Lambe and Walsh 14th overall in this Olympic-class event.

World Rowing Championships, Amsterdam, Day Six (Irish interest, selected results)

Women

Lightweight Double Sculls – C Final (Places 13 to 18): 1 Russia (D Stepochkina, O Arkadova) 6:58.21, 2 Ireland (C Lambe, D Walsh) 7:00.11, 3 Denmark 7:03.49, 4 Switzerland 7:03.51, 5 Belarus 7:09.08, 6 Greece 7:14.20.

Published in Rowing

#ROWING: Paul O’Donovan gave Ireland its first A Final place at the World Rowing Championships in Amsterdam today with a stirring performance which yielded second place in the lightweight single sculls semi-final. The UCD man lagged the field in the early stages; he was sixth at 500 metres as Zhao Jingbin of China and Marcello Miani of Italy commanded the race. By halfway O’Donovan was marginally in third place, but still over three seconds behind the leaders. As Miani moved clear in the final 1,000 metres, O’Donovan chased down and passed the Chinese. In a close finish, O’Donovan and Perry Ward of Australia took second and third, with Zhao Jingbin pushed into fourth and the B Final.

The Ireland lightweight men’s pair of Mark O’Donovan and Niall Kenny finished sixth in their semi-final and must settle for a B Final place. This was an exciting and fast race where all the boats were in with a chance of qualification until the very final stages, Switzerland, France and Australia took the A Final spots.

World Rowing Championships, Day Five (Irish interest; selected results)

Men

Lightweight Pair – A/B Semi-Final One (First Three to A Final; rest to B Final): 1 Switzerland (S Niepmann, L Tramer) 6:38.67, 2 France (A Mouterde, T Baroukh) 6:41.22, 3 Australia (A Foot, D Purcell) 6:42.39; 4 Bulgaria 6:44.00, 5 Netherlands 6:45.00, 6 Ireland (M O’Donovan, N Kenny) 6:46.60.

Lightweight Single Scull – A/B Semi-Final One (First Three to A Final; rest to B Final): 1 Italy (M Miani) 7:02.00, 2 Ireland (P O’Donovan) 7:03.59, 3 Australia (P Ward) 7:04.10; 4 China 7:04.99, 5 Denmark 7:08.21, 6 Hungary 7:15.08.

Women

Pair – A/B Semi-Final Two (First Three to A Final; rest to B Final): 1 United States (M Kalmoe, K Simmonds) 7:16.35, 2 New Zealand (L Trappitt, R Scown) 7:22.12, 3 Australia (C Sutherland, L Stephan) 7:30.02; 4 Serbia 7:34.92, 5 Ireland (L Kennedy, L Dilleen) 7:35.18, 6 Czech Republic 7:45.68.

Lightweight Double Sculls - C/D Semi-Final (First Three to C Final; rest to D Final): 1 Denmark 7:25.98, 2 Ireland (C Lambe, D Walsh) 7:26.35, 3 Russia 7:26.65; 4 Argentina 7:27.24.

Published in Rowing

#ROWING: Ireland’s lightweight double scull of Claire Lambe and Denise Walsh finished second in a remarkably close C/D Semi-Final of the World Rowing Championships this morning in Amsterdam, and thus qualified for the C Final. Russia held the lead for most of the race, but Denmark and Ireland pulled level with them in the closing stages and the fourth combatant, Argentina, closed up on these three. Denmark won, from Ireland and Russia, with all three boats covered by .67 of a second; Argentina were .59 of a second behind Russia, but go to the D Final.

World Rowing Championships, Day Five (Irish interest; selected results)

Women

Pair – Semi-Final Two (First Three to A Final; rest to B Final): 1 United States (M Kalmoe, K Simmonds) 7:16.35, 2 New Zealand (L Trappitt, R Scown) 7:22.12, 3 Australia (C Sutherland, L Stephan) 7:30.02; 4 Serbia 7:34.92, 5 Ireland (L Kennedy, L Dilleen) 7:35.18, 6 Czech Republic 7:45.68.

Lightweight Double Sculls - C/D Semi-Final (First Three to C Final; rest to D Final): 1 Denmark 7:25.98, 2 Ireland (C Lambe, D Walsh) 7:26.35, 3 Russia 7:26.65; 4 Argentina 7:27.24.

Published in Rowing
Page 5 of 7

The Irish Coast Guard

The Irish Coast Guard is Ireland's fourth 'Blue Light' service (along with An Garda Síochána, the Ambulance Service and the Fire Service). It provides a nationwide maritime emergency organisation as well as a variety of services to shipping and other government agencies.

The purpose of the Irish Coast Guard is to promote safety and security standards, and by doing so, prevent as far as possible, the loss of life at sea, and on inland waters, mountains and caves, and to provide effective emergency response services and to safeguard the quality of the marine environment.

The Irish Coast Guard has responsibility for Ireland's system of marine communications, surveillance and emergency management in Ireland's Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and certain inland waterways.

It is responsible for the response to, and co-ordination of, maritime accidents which require search and rescue and counter-pollution and ship casualty operations. It also has responsibility for vessel traffic monitoring.

Operations in respect of maritime security, illegal drug trafficking, illegal migration and fisheries enforcement are co-ordinated by other bodies within the Irish Government.

On average, each year, the Irish Coast Guard is expected to:

  • handle 3,000 marine emergencies
  • assist 4,500 people and save about 200 lives
  • task Coast Guard helicopters on missions

The Coast Guard has been around in some form in Ireland since 1908.

Coast Guard helicopters

The Irish Coast Guard has contracted five medium-lift Sikorsky Search and Rescue helicopters deployed at bases in Dublin, Waterford, Shannon and Sligo.

The helicopters are designated wheels up from initial notification in 15 minutes during daylight hours and 45 minutes at night. One aircraft is fitted and its crew trained for under slung cargo operations up to 3000kgs and is available on short notice based at Waterford.

These aircraft respond to emergencies at sea, inland waterways, offshore islands and mountains of Ireland (32 counties).

They can also be used for assistance in flooding, major inland emergencies, intra-hospital transfers, pollution, and aerial surveillance during daylight hours, lifting and passenger operations and other operations as authorised by the Coast Guard within appropriate regulations.

Irish Coastguard FAQs

The Irish Coast Guard provides nationwide maritime emergency response, while also promoting safety and security standards. It aims to prevent the loss of life at sea, on inland waters, on mountains and in caves; and to safeguard the quality of the marine environment.

The main role of the Irish Coast Guard is to rescue people from danger at sea or on land, to organise immediate medical transport and to assist boats and ships within the country's jurisdiction. It has three marine rescue centres in Dublin, Malin Head, Co Donegal, and Valentia Island, Co Kerry. The Dublin National Maritime Operations centre provides marine search and rescue responses and coordinates the response to marine casualty incidents with the Irish exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

Yes, effectively, it is the fourth "blue light" service. The Marine Rescue Sub-Centre (MRSC) Valentia is the contact point for the coastal area between Ballycotton, Co Cork and Clifden, Co Galway. At the same time, the MRSC Malin Head covers the area between Clifden and Lough Foyle. Marine Rescue Co-ordination Centre (MRCC) Dublin covers Carlingford Lough, Co Louth to Ballycotton, Co Cork. Each MRCC/MRSC also broadcasts maritime safety information on VHF and MF radio, including navigational and gale warnings, shipping forecasts, local inshore forecasts, strong wind warnings and small craft warnings.

The Irish Coast Guard handles about 3,000 marine emergencies annually, and assists 4,500 people - saving an estimated 200 lives, according to the Department of Transport. In 2016, Irish Coast Guard helicopters completed 1,000 missions in a single year for the first time.

Yes, Irish Coast Guard helicopters evacuate medical patients from offshore islands to hospital on average about 100 times a year. In September 2017, the Department of Health announced that search and rescue pilots who work 24-hour duties would not be expected to perform any inter-hospital patient transfers. The Air Corps flies the Emergency Aeromedical Service, established in 2012 and using an AW139 twin-engine helicopter. Known by its call sign "Air Corps 112", it airlifted its 3,000th patient in autumn 2020.

The Irish Coast Guard works closely with the British Maritime and Coastguard Agency, which is responsible for the Northern Irish coast.

The Irish Coast Guard is a State-funded service, with both paid management personnel and volunteers, and is under the auspices of the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport. It is allocated approximately 74 million euro annually in funding, some 85 per cent of which pays for a helicopter contract that costs 60 million euro annually. The overall funding figure is "variable", an Oireachtas committee was told in 2019. Other significant expenditure items include volunteer training exercises, equipment, maintenance, renewal, and information technology.

The Irish Coast Guard has four search and rescue helicopter bases at Dublin, Waterford, Shannon and Sligo, run on a contract worth 50 million euro annually with an additional 10 million euro in costs by CHC Ireland. It provides five medium-lift Sikorsky S-92 helicopters and trained crew. The 44 Irish Coast Guard coastal units with 1,000 volunteers are classed as onshore search units, with 23 of the 44 units having rigid inflatable boats (RIBs) and 17 units having cliff rescue capability. The Irish Coast Guard has 60 buildings in total around the coast, and units have search vehicles fitted with blue lights, all-terrain vehicles or quads, first aid equipment, generators and area lighting, search equipment, marine radios, pyrotechnics and appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE). The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) and Community Rescue Boats Ireland also provide lifeboats and crews to assist in search and rescue. The Irish Coast Guard works closely with the Garda Siochána, National Ambulance Service, Naval Service and Air Corps, Civil Defence, while fishing vessels, ships and other craft at sea offer assistance in search operations.

The helicopters are designated as airborne from initial notification in 15 minutes during daylight hours, and 45 minutes at night. The aircraft respond to emergencies at sea, on inland waterways, offshore islands and mountains and cover the 32 counties. They can also assist in flooding, major inland emergencies, intra-hospital transfers, pollution, and can transport offshore firefighters and ambulance teams. The Irish Coast Guard volunteers units are expected to achieve a 90 per cent response time of departing from the station house in ten minutes from notification during daylight and 20 minutes at night. They are also expected to achieve a 90 per cent response time to the scene of the incident in less than 60 minutes from notification by day and 75 minutes at night, subject to geographical limitations.

Units are managed by an officer-in-charge (three stripes on the uniform) and a deputy officer in charge (two stripes). Each team is trained in search skills, first aid, setting up helicopter landing sites and a range of maritime skills, while certain units are also trained in cliff rescue.

Volunteers receive an allowance for time spent on exercises and call-outs. What is the difference between the Irish Coast Guard and the RNLI? The RNLI is a registered charity which has been saving lives at sea since 1824, and runs a 24/7 volunteer lifeboat service around the British and Irish coasts. It is a declared asset of the British Maritime and Coast Guard Agency and the Irish Coast Guard. Community Rescue Boats Ireland is a community rescue network of volunteers under the auspices of Water Safety Ireland.

No, it does not charge for rescue and nor do the RNLI or Community Rescue Boats Ireland.

The marine rescue centres maintain 19 VHF voice and DSC radio sites around the Irish coastline and a digital paging system. There are two VHF repeater test sites, four MF radio sites and two NAVTEX transmitter sites. Does Ireland have a national search and rescue plan? The first national search and rescue plan was published in July, 2019. It establishes the national framework for the overall development, deployment and improvement of search and rescue services within the Irish Search and Rescue Region and to meet domestic and international commitments. The purpose of the national search and rescue plan is to promote a planned and nationally coordinated search and rescue response to persons in distress at sea, in the air or on land.

Yes, the Irish Coast Guard is responsible for responding to spills of oil and other hazardous substances with the Irish pollution responsibility zone, along with providing an effective response to marine casualties and monitoring or intervening in marine salvage operations. It provides and maintains a 24-hour marine pollution notification at the three marine rescue centres. It coordinates exercises and tests of national and local pollution response plans.

The first Irish Coast Guard volunteer to die on duty was Caitriona Lucas, a highly trained member of the Doolin Coast Guard unit, while assisting in a search for a missing man by the Kilkee unit in September 2016. Six months later, four Irish Coast Guard helicopter crew – Dara Fitzpatrick, Mark Duffy, Paul Ormsby and Ciarán Smith -died when their Sikorsky S-92 struck Blackrock island off the Mayo coast on March 14, 2017. The Dublin-based Rescue 116 crew were providing "top cover" or communications for a medical emergency off the west coast and had been approaching Blacksod to refuel. Up until the five fatalities, the Irish Coast Guard recorded that more than a million "man hours" had been spent on more than 30,000 rescue missions since 1991.

Several investigations were initiated into each incident. The Marine Casualty Investigation Board was critical of the Irish Coast Guard in its final report into the death of Caitriona Lucas, while a separate Health and Safety Authority investigation has been completed, but not published. The Air Accident Investigation Unit final report into the Rescue 116 helicopter crash has not yet been published.

The Irish Coast Guard in its present form dates back to 1991, when the Irish Marine Emergency Service was formed after a campaign initiated by Dr Joan McGinley to improve air/sea rescue services on the west Irish coast. Before Irish independence, the British Admiralty was responsible for a Coast Guard (formerly the Water Guard or Preventative Boat Service) dating back to 1809. The West Coast Search and Rescue Action Committee was initiated with a public meeting in Killybegs, Co Donegal, in 1988 and the group was so effective that a Government report was commissioned, which recommended setting up a new division of the Department of the Marine to run the Marine Rescue Co-Ordination Centre (MRCC), then based at Shannon, along with the existing coast radio service, and coast and cliff rescue. A medium-range helicopter base was established at Shannon within two years. Initially, the base was served by the Air Corps.

The first director of what was then IMES was Capt Liam Kirwan, who had spent 20 years at sea and latterly worked with the Marine Survey Office. Capt Kirwan transformed a poorly funded voluntary coast and cliff rescue service into a trained network of cliff and sea rescue units – largely voluntary, but with paid management. The MRCC was relocated from Shannon to an IMES headquarters at the then Department of the Marine (now Department of Transport) in Leeson Lane, Dublin. The coast radio stations at Valentia, Co Kerry, and Malin Head, Co Donegal, became marine rescue-sub-centres.

The current director is Chris Reynolds, who has been in place since August 2007 and was formerly with the Naval Service. He has been seconded to the head of mission with the EUCAP Somalia - which has a mandate to enhance Somalia's maritime civilian law enforcement capacity – since January 2019.

  • Achill, Co. Mayo
  • Ardmore, Co. Waterford
  • Arklow, Co. Wicklow
  • Ballybunion, Co. Kerry
  • Ballycotton, Co. Cork
  • Ballyglass, Co. Mayo
  • Bonmahon, Co. Waterford
  • Bunbeg, Co. Donegal
  • Carnsore, Co. Wexford
  • Castlefreake, Co. Cork
  • Castletownbere, Co. Cork
  • Cleggan, Co. Galway
  • Clogherhead, Co. Louth
  • Costelloe Bay, Co. Galway
  • Courtown, Co. Wexford
  • Crosshaven, Co. Cork
  • Curracloe, Co. Wexford
  • Dingle, Co. Kerry
  • Doolin, Co. Clare
  • Drogheda, Co. Louth
  • Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin
  • Dunmore East, Co. Waterford
  • Fethard, Co. Wexford
  • Glandore, Co. Cork
  • Glenderry, Co. Kerry
  • Goleen, Co. Cork
  • Greencastle, Co. Donegal
  • Greenore, Co. Louth
  • Greystones, Co. Wicklow
  • Guileen, Co. Cork
  • Howth, Co. Dublin
  • Kilkee, Co. Clare
  • Killala, Co. Mayo
  • Killybegs, Co. Donegal
  • Kilmore Quay, Co. Wexford
  • Knightstown, Co. Kerry
  • Mulroy, Co. Donegal
  • North Aran, Co. Galway
  • Old Head Of Kinsale, Co. Cork
  • Oysterhaven, Co. Cork
  • Rosslare, Co. Wexford
  • Seven Heads, Co. Cork
  • Skerries, Co. Dublin Summercove, Co. Cork
  • Toe Head, Co. Cork
  • Tory Island, Co. Donegal
  • Tramore, Co. Waterford
  • Waterville, Co. Kerry
  • Westport, Co. Mayo
  • Wicklow
  • Youghal, Co. Cork

Sources: Department of Transport © Afloat 2020

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