#RNLI - Hours after rescuing a family of five from their grounded yacht, Skerries RNLI launched to the aid of a teenager blown out to sea on a stand-up paddle board yesterday evening (Tuesday 14 August).
Skerries RNLI was tasked along with the Dublin-based Irish Coast Guard helicopter Rescue 116 after a 999 call from a member of the public reporting a person in the water off Gormanston beach who appeared unable to get back to shore.
The volunteer crew in Skerries launched their Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat Louis Simson and proceeded directly to the Gormanston area. The rescue helicopter arrived on scene just before the lifeboat and was able to pinpoint the casualty’s location.
There were two people clinging to the paddle board when the lifeboat arrived: a teenage male who was in difficulty, and an experienced sea swimmer who swam out to the teenager in order to assist him and keep him calm.
The crew helped both people on board and then took the paddle board into the lifeboat. The swimmer was insistent that he was okay and asked to be dropped to shore. However, he had been in the water for a considerable amount of time and was very cold.
It was decided that the best course of action would be to bring him back to the lifeboat station, where the lifeboat was greeted by Skerries RNLI honorary medical Officer Dr Seamus Mullholland and an awaiting ambulance, both of whom had been called as a precaution.
The teenager was treated for symptoms of mild hypothermia and monitored closely for a period of time before he was reunited with his mother by the Skerries Coast Guard unit.
Speaking about the callout, Skerries RNLI volunteer lifeboat press officer Gerry Canning said: “The young man in this case was caught out by a sudden change in the conditions. Thankfully he was wearing a lifejacket and someone on shore knew to dial 999 and ask for the coastguard.
“And while we would recommend that you never enter the water to help someone, we would like to thank the swimmer who assisted the boy for keeping him calm and encouraging him to stay with his board until help arrived.”
The incident came hours after the Skerries lifeboat rescued a French family of five from their yacht that ran aground at the town’s harbour, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.