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Displaying items by tag: Grande Senegal

On Monday 26 July, the Grande Senegal, a brand new vessel that was only launched this year for Italian shipping giant, Grimaldi Lines, docked in Dublin after a 9,600km voyage from Douala, Cameroon, along Africa's mid-western coast.
Onboard was a large-scale consignment of Irish Defence Forces military equipment from Chad, writes Jehan Ashmore.
The charter of the 47,218 gross tonnes marked the final phase in the withdrawel since April of Irish Defence Forces from UN-peacekeeping duties in the troubled land-locked central African state. The Irish-based troops had already flown home in advance of the military hardware.
In total, 3,000 tonnes of equipment was shipped which included 208 TEU (20-foot long containers) 75 trucks, 4x4s, armoured vehicles and an assortment of trailers and fuel bowsers.
The cargo was first moved from Defence Force facilities based at Goz Beida, in eastern Chad, across 900km of desert to the Chadian capital, N'Djamena. From there the equipment was divided with sensitive cargo flown to the port of Douala. The remaining cargo was taken on another 900km road-trip to Ngaoundere, in northern Cameroon. Upon arrival at Ngaoundere, the cargo was transferred by rail for 650km to Douala, finally completing the journey to the African port.
The transportation was undertaken during the impending threat of the rainy season which can pose serious difficulties for all modes of
wheeled transport to the extent that renders progress to be difficult if not impossible. The major logisticical exercise was one of the most
challenging operations experienced by the Defence Forces.
With the equipment loaded at Douala, Grande Senegal set sail on 13 July bound for Dublin. The long-distance passage took a fortnight to arrive at Dublin, where the ConRo (Containers and Roll-On Roll-Off) vessel discharged vehicles through the stern-mounted door ramp.
Once the equipment was disembarked at the quayside, the Gardai and Defence Forces provided joint escorts to the vehicle-conveys, to ensure a speedy exit out of the port, destined for military barracks. Grande Senegal is one of seven Grande 'Angola' class newbuilds built at the Uljanik Shipyard, Pula, Croatia. Each 210 metre-long ConRo vessel can combine a load of 2000 vehicles and 800 TEU, or alternatively a maximum of 1,360 TEU. The Grande Senegal departed Dublin the next day for Amsterdam.


The new multi-purpose vessel, Grande  Senegal fitted with stern-vehicle ramp, berthed at Alexandra Basin, Dublin on 26 July. Photo © Jehan Ashmore/ShipSNAPS
Published in Ports & Shipping

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.


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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