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RNLI Lifeboat News From Ireland
The first ‘Launch a Memory’ lifeboat St. Christopher put on service in Ireland came home to an emotional welcome in Clifden, Connemara. The RNLI lifeboat carries the names of 10,000 loved ones on its hull, submitted by members of the public following a special fundraising initiative by the charity
Clifden RNLI’s new all-weather Shannon class lifeboat arrived to an emotional welcome from crowds gathered in the Connemara community to see it complete its week-long voyage home from the charity’s All Weather lifeboat centre in Poole. As Afloat reported earlier,…
On 13 March 2017, the Rescue 116 crew of Capt. Dara Fitzpatrick, Capt. Mark Duffy, Paul Ormsby and Ciarán Smith took off from Dublin airport just after 11 p.m. for a medical evacuation off the west coast of Ireland. The…
Crosshaven RNLI volunteers were tasked by the Coast Guard to a 32’ yacht with suspected electrical fire
On Saturday afternoon, 14 May, while on exercise in Cork Harbour, Crosshaven RNLI volunteers were tasked by the Coast Guard to a 32’ yacht with suspected electrical fire on board and mechanical difficulties. The lifeboat with David Venner, Clare Morgan,…
RNLI Lough Derg Lap The Lake 2022 poster
Lough Derg RNLI has hailed as a great success its first ‘Lap the Lake’ charity cycle. The local lifesaving charity’s fundraising branch organised the 130km cycle around Lough Derg for last Saturday 8 May, which saw 250 cyclists take part…
The Bundoran Lifeboat, William Henry Liddington
The volunteer crew of the Bundoran RNLI Lifeboat was called into action on Friday afternoon 13th May to assist two male surfers in difficulty at Rossnowlagh Beach in County Donegal. Just after 3:35 pm a number of 999 emergency calls were…
The new RNLI Clifden lifeboat has over 10,000 names of loved ones on its hull
A newly built all-weather lifeboat with over 10,000 names on its hull which is due to arrive at the RNLI’s Clifden station in Connemara on Saturday has already recorded its first rescue mission. The Shannon-class lifeboat named St Christopher escorted…
Bangor RNLI’s inshore lifeboat
Bangor RNLI’s volunteers came to the rescue of six women on a yacht after its engine failed during a passage to Glenarm in Co Antrim. The inshore lifeboat Jessie Hillyard was launched on Monday morning (9 May) from Belfast Lough…
Larne RNLI’s inshore lifeboat at Brown’s Bay
Larne RNLI in Northern Ireland launched to the aid of a group of paddle boarders who were caught in an offshore breeze at the weekend. The volunteer crew were requested to launch their inshore lifeboat by Belfast Coastguard at 2.09pm…
Located in Donegal Bay, Bundoran Lifeboat Station has provided search and rescue cover since 1994
A surfer who got into difficulty at Rossnowlagh Beach yesterday afternoon (Sunday 8 May) was brought to safety by the volunteer crew of Bundoran RNLI. The alarm was raised by a passer-by on the beach shortly after 3 pm. The…
Courtmacsherry’s lifeboat crew on the late-night callout
Courtmacsherry RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat Frederick Storey Cockburn was called out at 10.15pm on Wednesday night (4 May) to join a search off Garrettstown and Garrylucas beaches near the Old Head of Kinsale in West Cork. Members of the public noticed…
File image of Aran Islands RNLI's all-weather lifeboat
The volunteer crew of Aran Islands RNLI on Inis Mór were requested on Tuesday evening (3 May) to launch their all-weather Severn class lifeboat to go to the aid of a patient on the neighbouring island of Inis Meáin. Under…
The organising committee of the Portrush Raft Race have announced that this year’s event will be held on 3rd and 4th September and not in May as it usually was prior to the Coronavirus pandemic
The fundraising Portrush Raft Race is something of an institution in the north coast town of the same name, which is blessed with two stunning beaches and tidily in between, a picturesque harbour where the RNLI Severn Class lifeboat the…
Fethard Lifeboat Station operates a D-class lifeboat, which is launched from multiple sites on the Hook peninsula. The station reopened in 1996 after being closed for 80 years
Volunteer lifeboat crew at Fethard RNLI were requested to launch their lifeboat by the Irish Coast Guard on Sunday afternoon (1 May) at 3pm, to the aid of four people on board a yacht south of Duncannon Fort in the…
Located on Ireland’s rugged Wild Atlantic Way, Achill Island’s Trent class all-weather lifeboat is ready to help the offshore island communities
Achill Island RNLI responded to a request for assistance with the medical evacuation of a patient on Inisturk, a small island off the coast of County Galway, on Bank Holiday Monday. The volunteer lifeboat crew launched shortly before 5 pm yesterday…
Lough Derg RNLI lifeboat Jean Spier
Valentia Coast Guard requested Lough Derg RNLI lifeboat to launch to assist a lone skipper on a 25ft yacht aground at Ryan’s Point on the eastern shore of Lough Derg on Sunday at 4.47 pm. The wind was westerly, Force 2/3.…
Clifden Quay in Connemara
Clifden RNLI’s volunteer lifeboat crew joined in a multi-agency response to an incident at Clifden Quay yesterday (Tuesday 26 April) where a casualty was injured in a fall from the quayside onto a boat some 15-20ft below. Mechanic Joe Acton…

Royal National Lifeboat Institute (RNLI) in Ireland Information

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) is a charity to save lives at sea in the waters of UK and Ireland. Funded principally by legacies and donations, the RNLI operates a fleet of lifeboats, crewed by volunteers, based at a range of coastal and inland waters stations. Working closely with UK and Ireland Coastguards, RNLI crews are available to launch at short notice to assist people and vessels in difficulties.

RNLI was founded in 1824 and is based in Poole, Dorset. The organisation raised €210m in funds in 2019, spending €200m on lifesaving activities and water safety education. RNLI also provides a beach lifeguard service in the UK and has recently developed an International drowning prevention strategy, partnering with other organisations and governments to make drowning prevention a global priority.

Irish Lifeboat Stations

There are 46 lifeboat stations on the island of Ireland, with an operational base in Swords, Co Dublin. Irish RNLI crews are tasked through a paging system instigated by the Irish Coast Guard which can task a range of rescue resources depending on the nature of the emergency.

Famous Irish Lifeboat Rescues

Irish Lifeboats have participated in many rescues, perhaps the most famous of which was the rescue of the crew of the Daunt Rock lightship off Cork Harbour by the Ballycotton lifeboat in 1936. Spending almost 50 hours at sea, the lifeboat stood by the drifting lightship until the proximity to the Daunt Rock forced the coxswain to get alongside and successfully rescue the lightship's crew.

32 Irish lifeboat crew have been lost in rescue missions, including the 15 crew of the Kingstown (now Dun Laoghaire) lifeboat which capsized while attempting to rescue the crew of the SS Palme on Christmas Eve 1895.

FAQs

While the number of callouts to lifeboat stations varies from year to year, Howth Lifeboat station has aggregated more 'shouts' in recent years than other stations, averaging just over 60 a year.

Stations with an offshore lifeboat have a full-time mechanic, while some have a full-time coxswain. However, most lifeboat crews are volunteers.

There are 46 lifeboat stations on the island of Ireland

32 Irish lifeboat crew have been lost in rescue missions, including the 15 crew of the Kingstown (now Dun Laoghaire) lifeboat which capsized while attempting to rescue the crew of the SS Palme on Christmas Eve 1895

In 2019, 8,941 lifeboat launches saved 342 lives across the RNLI fleet.

The Irish fleet is a mixture of inshore and all-weather (offshore) craft. The offshore lifeboats, which range from 17m to 12m in length are either moored afloat, launched down a slipway or are towed into the sea on a trailer and launched. The inshore boats are either rigid or non-rigid inflatables.

The Irish Coast Guard in the Republic of Ireland or the UK Coastguard in Northern Ireland task lifeboats when an emergency call is received, through any of the recognised systems. These include 999/112 phone calls, Mayday/PanPan calls on VHF, a signal from an emergency position indicating radio beacon (EPIRB) or distress signals.

The Irish Coast Guard is the government agency responsible for the response to, and co-ordination of, maritime accidents which require search and rescue operations. To carry out their task the Coast Guard calls on their own resources – Coast Guard units manned by volunteers and contracted helicopters, as well as "declared resources" - RNLI lifeboats and crews. While lifeboats conduct the operation, the coordination is provided by the Coast Guard.

A lifeboat coxswain (pronounced cox'n) is the skipper or master of the lifeboat.

RNLI Lifeboat crews are required to follow a particular development plan that covers a pre-agreed range of skills necessary to complete particular tasks. These skills and tasks form part of the competence-based training that is delivered both locally and at the RNLI's Lifeboat College in Poole, Dorset

 

While the RNLI is dependent on donations and legacies for funding, they also need volunteer crew and fund-raisers.

© Afloat 2020

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