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Kilkeel Lifeboat Launches To Fisherman Taken Ill

27th July 2018
Kilkeel RNLI alongside the fishing boat which reported an ill crew member yesterday evening Kilkeel RNLI alongside the fishing boat which reported an ill crew member yesterday evening Photo: RNLI/Kilkeel

#RNLI - Kilkeel RNLI’s volunteer crew launched their inshore lifeboat at 7.55pm yesterday evening (Thursday 26 July) after a crew member of a fishing boat was reported unwell and in need of medical attention.

Winds were blowing 3 to 4 knots with a choppy sea and good light as the lifeboat headed to the fishing vessel four miles south-east of Kilkeel Harbour.

On reaching the fishing boat, two lifeboat crew members went aboard to access the casualty, who was a diabetic and unconscious.

The lifeboat crew made the casualty comfortable and administered oxygen while reassuring him that he would be fine.

Another crew member went aboard with a stretcher but with the choppy conditions, it was deemed too awkward to transfer the casualty to the lifeboat, so the three crew members remained with the casualty.

On entering the safety of the harbour, the casualty was finally transferred to the lifeboat and safely brought ashore to a waiting ambulance crew. The local coastguard was also in attendance.

Kilkeel RNLI lifeboat operations manager John Fisher said: “The crew performed, as always, in a professional and competent manner and the callout showed the value of keeping up-to-date with all first aid matters. And we are glad to know that the casualty is making a good recovery.”

Earlier in the day, Enniskillen RNLI was requested to launch by Belfast Coastguard at 12.36pm to a boat aground and reports of a person in the water in the Castle Cauldwell area.

The PSNI boat Lady Grey was also requested. Weather conditions at the time were clear and bright with a moderate wind.

Enniskillen’s volunteer crew on the inshore lifeboat Joseph and Mary Hiley and the rescue water craft made their way to the area and found all six people aboard the grounded 40ft cruiser — five adults and one child — were safe and well.

A tow was set up and the crew managed to free the vessel from the area into safer water. The lifeboat crew onboard checked the boat over and found it working well mechanically, and stayed with the cruiser’s crew until they were well into the Belleek River. The passengers were happy to make their onward journey.

“We would like to wish those onboard the cruiser a safe and enjoyable onward journey,” said Stephen Ingram, Enniskillen RNLI’s volunteer lifeboat press officer. “Today’s callout was a good example of ourselves and our colleagues in the local PSNI working well together to bring people to safety.

“As people continue to enjoy Lough Erne this summer, we would remind everyone to always respect the water. If your vessel does get into difficulty call 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard.

“As the terrain underwater can be unpredictable we would ask people to always remain onboard your boat and wait for help to arrive.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
MacDara Conroy

About The Author

MacDara Conroy

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MacDara Conroy is a contributor covering all things on the water, from boating and wildlife to science and business

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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.

© Afloat 2020

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