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Lifeboat Crews Launch 'MAYDAY' Campaign

20th April 2012
Lifeboat Crews Launch 'MAYDAY' Campaign

#LIFEBOAT – Volunteer lifeboat crew took to Dublin's Grafton Street to launch the RNLI's MAYDAY campaign in Ireland, which is proudly supported by John West. The charity is asking the public to get behind its lifeboat crews in Ireland by donating on 1 May or by holding their own fundraising event.

Funds raised on MAYDAY will go towards the training of volunteer lifeboat crews and the operation of RNLI lifeboats across Ireland.

Lifeboat crew and their D-class inshore lifeboat, received a warm reception from the public on Grafton Street. Crewmembers Sharon Pollock from Newcastle, County Down, Joss Walsh, Luke Malcolm and Ian Martin from Howth all volunteer for the RNLI. Being a lifeboat volunteer means they must wear a pager full time to alert them when there is a Mayday emergency call, night or day. It means dropping everything, leaving the workplace, their families or the comfort of their beds to launch the lifeboat and assist those in trouble at sea, whatever the conditions.

Sharon Pollock (31) has been a volunteer lifeboat crewmember for the past eleven years. 'I wanted to join the lifeboat crew since I was a little girl. Every Mayday call is different. Saving a life at sea is hugely rewarding, as it's often carried out in challenging conditions. Sadly we are faced with tragedies too and returning a loved one to their family is important part of the work the RNLI do.'

Commenting on the Mayday campaign RNLI Corporate Partnerships Manager Michelle Noone said, 'We are delighted to have the support of John West for the RNLI's first MAYDAY in 2012. John West know firsthand the reality of the power of the sea, and fully support and appreciate the work the RNLI do in saving lives every day throughout Ireland. We would like to thank them for their wonderful support.'

John West MD Brendan Murphy said: 'We have worked closely with the RNLI fundraising team to come up with the MAYDAY initiative. We are hoping that 1 May will become synonymous with Irish people playing their part in saving lives at sea. We appreciate any donations that are made to the RNLI, no matter how small.'

The collection will take place on Tuesday 1 May. RNLI collectors will be out in force raising funds. Every cent the RNLI receive will help train and equip the lifeboat volunteers.

For details and information on how to donate go to www.mayday.rnli.org. or call 01 895 1837

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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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.

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