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Courtmacsherry RNLI Volunteer Assists Call-Out Off English Coast

30th August 2013
Courtmacsherry RNLI Volunteer Assists Call-Out Off English Coast

#RNLI - A volunteer crew member from Courtmacsherry RNLI found himself involved in a lifeboat call out miles from home this week when he went to the assistance of yacht involved in a collision off Cumbria yesterday (29 August).
 
Barrow RNLI launched their all-weather lifeboat when Liverpool Coastguard requested assistance following a report of a collision between a 28ft yacht, Shola, and a large vessel some 13 miles off Walney Island in Morecambe Bay. 

Also making his way to the scene was Kevin Young, skipper of the Windcat 6 with two crew, who was 3.5 miles from the incident when the call for assistance was received. 

It was unknown if there was any damage caused to either vessel, but the yacht skipper - a lone sailor - was believed to be suffering from shock.


Once on scene, Young transferred one of his crew aboard the casualty yacht to take command and took off the yachtsman, who was showing signs of shock. They then made their way at speed to Barrow-in-Furness where they met the Barrow lifeboat, which then took over the casualty care.

Liverpool Coastguard had also requested the attendance of a rescue helicopter from RAF Valley, and upon its arrival the casualty was airlifted from the lifeboat onto the aircraft and transferred to Furness General Hospital for assessment.



An RNLI crew member from Barrow was then put aboard the yacht with the crewman from Windcat 6 and the vessel was sailed to Roa Island, where it was assisted to moor up on a casualty mooring by the inshore lifeboat.



"The last thing I thought I would be doing at my day job would be getting involved in a call-out with the RNLI but that’s exactly what happened," said Young, who works with wind farms off the English coast but serves as a member of the volunteer lifeboat crew when home in Courtmacsherry.

"When I spoke to the lifeboat crew they seemed surprised that I was able to brief them exactly on what we had done and how we had everything ready to hand over to them, so I explained to them that I was a deputy coxswain back home on our all-weather Trent class lifeboat and they understood.

"This callout shows that you never forget your training and the desire to help those in trouble on the sea," he added. "The skipper of the yacht was clearly in shock and needed assistance and thankfully with all the agencies working together we were able to get him medical attention and transferred to hospital quickly and safely.

"It’s good to know that RNLI lifeboat volunteers are the same wherever you go."   

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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