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RNLI Lifeboat News From Ireland
John Coyle OBE of Galway
Galway man John Coyle has been recognised by the Queen in the Birthday Honours list for his role in helping the RNLI in its work to save lives at sea. John is to receive an OBE. A former Trustee of…
Newcastle RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat
The team at Newcastle RNLI in Northern Ireland is calling for a new volunteer lifeboat press officer to help them to save lives at sea. This role will help raise awareness of the RNLI through the promotion of the lifeboat…
File image of Aran Islands RNLI’s Severn class lifeboat
Aran Islands RNLI’s volunteer crew launched their all-weather lifeboat at 4.43pm yesterday (Thursday 8 October) to assist a 38ft fishing vessel that was drifting “dangerously close” to Eagle Rock, just off Golam Head in Co Galway. Under coxswain John O'Donnell…
A file photo of Wicklow all-weather lifeboat
Wicklow all-weather RNLI lifeboat launched shortly before 11 pm this morning (Tuesday, 6 October) to assist in a multi-agency search for a missing person from a Dublin – Holyhead ferry. Fifteen minutes after launching Wicklow lifeboat was re-tasked by the…
 The Twelve Bens Cycling Club Sky Road Challenge 2020
Clifden RNLI was delighted to accept the sum of €3,774 raised by the Connemara based Twelve Bens Cycling Club after a unique and testing fundraising challenge. On Sunday, September 6th, 12 cyclists from the club undertook an innovative cycling challenge…
File image of Aran Islands RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat
Aran Islands RNLI has encouraged the public to always call for help when they believe they’ve seen someone in distress at sea. The message follows a callout across Galway Bay to Rossaveal in Connemara last night (Monday 5 October) that…
Youghal RNLI Involved in Multi-Agency Rescue of a Person Cut off by the Tide
The Volunteer crew of Youghal RNLI were requested to launch this evening at 5.20 pm to reports of a lady cut off by a rising tide near the pier at Knockadoon. The Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat arrived on the scene…
The two kayakers were found after dark in the Bristol Channel by Minehead RNLI and HM Coastguard
Kayakers have been urged to always carry some means of attracting attention in an emergency, such as flares or a torch. The call from the RNLI came after an incident off Somerset in the UK last month in which two…
Portrush RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat on course for Rathlin last night
Portrush RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat launched to reports of a yacht in difficulty off Rathlin Island in Northern Ireland last night (Friday 2 October). The volunteer crew were in the water just before 9pm, half an hour after paging, and headed…
John Payne, director of lifesaving operations for the RNLI, and HM Coastguard director Claire Hughes sign the MOU at Dover Lifeboat Station on Thursday 1 October
The RNLI and HM Coastguard have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that lays out each organisation’s responsibilities for search and rescue operations in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. John Payne, director of lifesaving operations for the RNLI, and…
Lough Derg RNLI’s inshore lifeboat Jean Spicer
Tuesday 13 October at 8pm is the date and time for your TV diary to see the volunteer crew of Lough Derg RNLI feature in the current series of Saving Lives at Sea on BBC Two. Viewers will see Lough…
Derry Clarke Does Scallops for the RNLI: Host a Fish Supper & Help the RNLI Save Lives This Autumn
Lifesavers at the RNLI are encouraging people to support them by signing up to host a Fish Supper this October or donate the price of fish and chips to raise vital funds for the lifesaving charity. The RNLI's annual fishy…
Family Whose Great-Grandfather was Recognised for Lifesaving Rescue Pay Tribute to Kilmore Quay RNLI
A Wexford family has expressed thanks to the volunteers of Kilmore Quay RNLI who brought them to safety earlier this summer when their pleasure craft got into difficulty. James Kehoe and his grandchildren Aisling, 13, Emily, 9, and Orla, 7,…
Tramore RNLI’s inshore lifeboat returning to station at Tramore Pier
Tramore RNLI’s lifeboat volunteers were tasked to the aid of a female swimmer in difficulty at the Guillamene cove in Co Waterford yesterday afternoon (Sunday 27 September). The inshore lifeboat was lunched at 1.55pm and within eight minutes was at…
Aberdeen’s inshore lifeboat Buoy Woody searches off Aberdeen Beach
Aberdeen’s two RNLI lifeboats launched minutes apart around 9am this morning (Sunday 27 September) to a report of two surfers in danger at the entrance to Aberdeen Harbour in Eastern Scotland. It emerged that the surfers had paddled out beyond…
Dun Laoghaire RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat Anna Livia
A new video from Dun Laoghaire RNLI explains the importance of checking the weather and tides before going out for a walk along the coast. With Ireland's coastal areas getting a lot quieter as autumn begins and as we head…

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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