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Two Callouts for Lough Derg RNLI Including a Vessel Taking on Water in Rough Weather

13th September 2020
Lough Derg RNLI carry out the first of two rescue of the lake Lough Derg RNLI carry out the first of two rescue of the lake

Two callouts for Lough Derg RNLI today – the first to two people on a 32ft cruiser aground by the Silver Islands on the Galway shore at the northern end of Lough Derg, and shortly after, a Mayday call to four people on board a 16ft motorboat taking on water in rough weather south of Parker’s Point on the southwestern end of the lake.

At 1.06 pm this afternoon, Sunday, September 13, Valentia Coast Guard requested Lough Derg RNLI lifeboat Jean Spier to assist 2 people on a 32ft cruiser reported to be aground by the Silver Islands, inside the red marker ‘Juliet’.

At 1.20 pm the lifeboat launched with helm Eleanor Hooker and crew Steve Smyth, Doireann Kennedy and Chris Parker on board. Visibility was good, and the wind was southwesterly Force 4, gusting Force 5.

As the lifeboat approached Cloondavaun Bay, the volunteer crew could see three vessels on standby in safe water monitoring the casualty vessel.

The lifeboat boat rounded the red navigation mark ‘Juliet’ and, as the water level on the lake is currently lower than usual, navigated a slow, safe route to the casualty vessel.

The lifeboat was alongside the casualty vessel at 1.46 pm. Both people on board were safe and unharmed and wearing their lifejackets. An RNLI volunteer transferred to the casualty vessel. Once he was satisfied that the vessel was not holed, he set up for a tow.

At 1.59 pm the lifeboat had the cruiser off the rocks and towed out into safe water where drives and rudder were checked and found to be in good working order.

The lifeboat took their crew member back onto the lifeboat and the cruiser made it’s way safely to Cloondavaun Bay Harbour

The lifeboat departed the scene and was back at station at 2.25 pm.

At 4.30 pm Valentia Coast Guard requested Lough Derg RNLI to assist 4 people on a 16ft motorboat taking on water in rough weather, and in danger of sinking. At 4.40 pm Lough Derg RNLI launched with helm Eleanor Hooker and crew Ger Egan, Doireann Kennedy and Tom Hayes on board. Winds were southwesterly, Force 5 with a moderate chop.

Given the critical nature of the launch, Rescue 115, the Irish Coast Guard Search and Rescue Helicopter took off from their base at Shannon Airport and Killaloe Coast Guard also launched from their base in Killaloe.

As the lifeboat approached Parker’s Point, Rescue 115 hailed the lifeboat to say they had located the casualty vessel and were going to hover close by. At 4.56 pm the lifeboat was alongside the casualty vessel. All four persons were unharmed and wearing their lifejackets. The had deployed their anchor which was holding them off the rocky shore.

Due to the swell swamping their deck, the casualty vessel had taken on a significant amount of water, which the crew were bailing from the bilge. At this time Killaloe Coast Guard arrived on scene and as the casualty vessel’s base was at Killaloe, it was agreed with Valentia Coast Guard that Killaloe Coast Guard would take the casualty vessel back to Killaloe.

Rescue 115 departed the scene to return to its base at Shannon. Lough Derg RNLI departed the scene was back at Station in Dromineer at 5.20 pm.

Peter Kennedy, Deputy Launching Authority at Lough Derg RNLI praised all the RNLI volunteers for their ‘swift response to the callout. Four people were reported to be in grave and imminent danger, and the efficient shore crew assistance was particularly crucial to a speedy launch of the lifeboat under these circumstances.’

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
Afloat.ie Team

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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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