Menu
Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

RNLI to Trial New Lifeboat Station at Union Hall in Cork

7th November 2013
RNLI to Trial New Lifeboat Station at Union Hall in Cork

#rnli – The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) has announced that it is to trial a new lifeboat station at Union Hall in south west Cork. At a meeting of the RNLI Board of Trustees the decision was taken to establish an inshore lifeboat station at Union Hall for a trial period of 24 months. Following the evaluation the lifesaving charity will examine whether there is a case to establish a permanent lifeboat station at Union Hall.

Formal representations were made in May to the RNLI from the Glandore Harbour Inshore Lifeboat Committee for the establishment of a lifeboat station in the area. The committee was made up of individuals from the Union Hall and Glandore area representing the fishing industry, marine leisure and the local community.

The trial station will operate an RNLI B Class lifeboat. This lifeboat is a rigid inflatable boat measuring 7.3 metres and which can reach speeds of up to 32 knots. It is fast, manoeuvrable and very reliable and can operate in rough weather conditions. The inshore lifeboat complements the work of the larger all-weather lifeboats, which are based at the neighbouring RNLI lifeboat stations of Baltimore and Courtmacsherry. Baltimore RNLI also operates an inshore lifeboat. These declared search and rescue assets work with the Irish Coast Guard to save lives at sea.

The Union Hall lifeboat will come from the existing RNLI relief fleet and the station will be based on Union Hall Pier in Keelbeg. It is hoped to have the station fully operational and ready for service by the middle of next year. Work will shortly begin on recruitment and training.

Commenting on the decision RNLI Regional Operations Manager for Ireland and the Isle of Man, Martyn Smith said, 'The south west coast of Cork is an area of significant maritime activity. Sadly it has also witnessed its fair share of tragedy. While RNLI all-weather lifeboat cover is strong along the Cork coast we feel there is a strong case for the addition of an inshore lifeboat based at Union Hall.'

'This coastline has many inlets and cliffs that are suitable for the rapid response and shallow water operations of an inshore lifeboat. Therefore the charity has taken this significant step in search and rescue cover along the south west coast and we are grateful to the people of Union Hall and Glandore for their support on this project.'

Paddy O'Donovan, Chairman of the Glandore Harbour Inshore Lifeboat Committee added, 'We are delighted that the RNLI have taken the decision to trial an inshore lifeboat at Union Hall for 24 months. We felt there was a strong case for a lifeboat here and we worked hard to bring the community together to make that case to the RNLI. We are all very familiar with the lifesaving work of the lifeboat crews in Baltimore and Courtmacsherry and we want the lifeboat crew in Union Hall to work alongside them in making sure our coastline has strong search and rescue cover.'

The RNLI already operates 44 lifeboat stations around the coast and on inland waters in Ireland.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Afloat.ie Team

About The Author

Afloat.ie Team

Email The Author

Afloat.ie is Ireland's dedicated marine journalism team.

Have you got a story for our reporters? Email us here.

We've got a favour to ask

More people are reading Afloat.ie than ever thanks to the power of the internet but we're in stormy seas because advertising revenues across the media are falling fast. Unlike many news sites, we haven’t put up a paywall because we want to keep our marine journalism open.

Afloat.ie is Ireland's only full–time marine journalism team and it takes time, money and hard work to produce our content.

So you can see why we need to ask for your help.

If everyone chipped in, we can enhance our coverage and our future would be more secure. You can help us through a small donation. Thank you.

Direct Donation to Afloat button

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

Featured Sailing School

INSS sidebutton

Featured Clubs

dbsc mainbutton
Howth Yacht Club
Kinsale Yacht Club
National Yacht Club
Royal Cork Yacht Club
Royal Irish Yacht club
Royal Saint George Yacht Club

Featured Brokers

leinster sidebutton

Featured Associations

ICRA
isora sidebutton

Featured Webcams

Featured Events 2022

Featured Marinas

dlmarina sidebutton

Featured Chandleries

CHMarine Afloat logo
osm sidebutton
https://afloat.ie/resources/marine-industry-news/viking-marine

Featured Sailmakers

northsails sidebutton
uksails sidebutton
quantum sidebutton
watson sidebutton

Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
podcast sidebutton
mansfield sidebutton
BSB sidebutton
wavelengths sidebutton
 

Please show your support for Afloat by donating