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Displaying items by tag: Lifeboats

This weekend’s Bundoran RNLI Soapbox Race will no longer be going ahead on Sunday 2 June due to poor weather forecast for the region.

In a statement, the organisers said: “It is with regret that we have decided to cancel this Sunday’s soapbox race event.

“Following consultation with weather charts and Met Éireann, the forecast is not favourable to run an event outdoors. For the comfort and safety of our volunteers, participants and spectators the organising committee has made the difficult decision to cancel the event.

“We are sorry to cause any disappointment, particularly to those who have already built soapboxes. We would like to thank those who had volunteered their time to help out at the event.

“Our annual flag day street collection will go ahead on Sunday and we thank you in advance for your generosity and continuing support of Bundoran RNLI Lifeboat.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

Final preparations are being made ahead of this weekend’s Bundoran RNLI Soapbox Race which takes place this Sunday 2 June at Astoria Road.

Now in its eighth year, the event is organised and hosted by the volunteer crew of the Bundoran RNLI lifeboat and is a major fundraiser for the charity.

The event is expected to attract as many as 2,000 soapbox enthusiasts and their supporters with race winning between 1pm and 4pm, weather permitting.

The prize up for grabs is the highly coveted Perpetual Cup and 12 months of bragging rights.

And the ever-popular €1,000 ball race will also take place directly after the soapbox final has been run, with balls on sale at just €5 from lunchtime on the day.

Event director Cormac McGurren says that the crew is looking forward to the day.

“The soapbox race is always the talk of the station for the weeks and months before it happens. It’s a fun family day out with lots of thrills and spills expected.

“We would like to thank in advance all of our sponsors, prize donors and local volunteers who are helping to run the event and also to sell the balls.”

Those wishing to race a soapbox on the day are encouraged to register online, though last-minute registrations on the day will be accepted.

There will be a number of traffic restrictions in place this Sunday to facilitate the race. Astoria Road will be closed from 8am till 7pm on Sunday at the junction with Main Street.

Traffic for Waterworld, Bundoran Adventure Park and Ozanam House should use Promenade Road and Atlantic Way. Traffic for Main Beach, Great Northern Hotel and Bundoran Golf Club should use Sea Road. Main beach car park will be open for parking as normal (with access via Sea Road).

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

Clogherhead locals are set to welcome the latest RNLI lifeboat in Ireland to the Co Louth town this Sunday 2 June.

The Shannon class lifeboat Michael O’Brien lifeboat is due to arrive in Clogherhead at exactly 13.31 which is also its operation number.

This lifeboat is unique in the RNLI’s fleet as it has been funded by an Irish legacy, named after an Irish lifeboat volunteer, designed by an Irish engineer and is of the first class to be called after an Irish river.

Its arrival also marks the start of a new chapter in the story of search and rescue in the North East.

A significant proportion of Clogherhead lifeboat’s funding (apart from local fundraising appeals) has been provided through a generous legacy by a Wexford farmer, Mr Henry Tomkins, who was a lifelong supporter of the RNLI.

Henry stipulated that a lifeboat be named for his longtime friend, former Arklow RNLI coxswain Michael O’Brien.

The arrival of the station’s new Shannon lifeboat will take place in front of the beach beside the lifeboat station in full view of the public.

'It is the most technologically advanced lifeboat in the fleet, and it will proudly serve the east coast for many years to come'

It will also be the first time in Ireland that the RNLI will use a SLARS (Shannon Launch and Recovery System) to launch and recover a lifeboat in Ireland.

The SLARS acts as a mobile slipway for the lifeboat, which can be driven directly onto the beach for recovery. It has a unique turntable cradle, which can rotate the lifeboat 180 degrees, ready to be launched again within 10 minutes.

Clogherhead RNLI coxswain Tomás Whelahan said: “We want the people of Clogherhead and the surrounding areas to come to welcome the new lifeboat home.

“The station has been preparing for this day for a long time and there is huge excitement for it. The past few weeks and months have been spent in preparation and training by all the crew and shore crew, to receive this incredible piece of kit from the RNLI.

“It is the most technologically advanced lifeboat in the fleet, and it will proudly serve the east coast for many years to come.

“We are incredibly honoured to receive it and we are grateful to our donor Henry Tomkins and to the local communities, who by their generosity, have made this day possible. We hope to bring many loved ones safely home in this new lifeboat.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Skerries RNLI towed two adults and two teenagers to safety on Saturday afternoon (25 May) after their motorboat broke down east of Rockabill Lighthouse.

Shortly after 5.30pm, Skerries RNLI were tasked by Dublin Coast Guard to assist a 21ft motorboat that had suffered engine failure off the lighthouse.

Visibility was good and conditions were calm, with a Force 2 north-westerly wind, as the volunteer crew launched their Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat Louis Simson to the location.

A tow was quickly established and the casualty boat was brought safely back to the slipway in Skerries. All on board were wearing lifejackets.

Speaking about the callout, volunteer lifeboat press officer Gerry Canning said: “We’ve had a number of calls recently where engine failure has been the cause. However it’s encouraging to see all on board wearing lifejackets once again.

“Lifejackets save lives and the message seems to be getting across.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Baltimore RNLI carried out a medical evacuation last night (Wednesday 22 May) from Heir Island off the coast of West Cork.

Baltimore’s volunteer lifeboat crew launched their inshore lifeboat following a request from the Irish Coast Guard at 8.34pm to provide medical assistance and evacuation to a woman on Heir Island who had sustained injuries following a fall.

The inshore lifeboat arrived at the pier on Heir Island at 8.50pm and removed the casualty to the lifeboat station 20 minutes later, where she was handed over to the care of HSE Ambulance crew.

Conditions at sea during the callout were calm with good visibility and no sea swell.

This was the first call for Baltimore’s new Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat, Rita Daphne Smyth, since she arrived on station last September.

Speaking following the callout, Baltimore RNLI volunteer lifeboat press officer Kate Callanan said: “Baltimore lifeboat is often called upon to safely transport casualties between the islands and mainland, and our volunteer crews are trained in casualty care.

“If you find yourself in need of medical assistance, call 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard. We wish the casualty a full recovery.”

There were four volunteer crew onboard the lifeboat: helm Jerry Smith and crew members Kieran Collins, Micheal Cottrell and Ian Lynch. Assisting at the boathouse in Baltimore were Rianne Smith, Marty O’Driscoll and Kieran Cotter.

In other lifeboat news, the outgoing chair of Clonallen Bridge Club, Warrenpoint, Maire Murray, chose the RNLI as the charity of choice for the year 2018-19.

At a recent meeting of the Clonallen Bridge Club a cheque for £500 was handed over to John Fisher, Kilkeel RNLI lifeboat operations manager by the club’s incoming president Marius McQue.

Fisher said: “As a charity we are always very thankful for all the money collected and donated to the RNLI. Giving our lifesavers the equipment they need to save lives is very expensive so be assured that the funds raised are used in the best possible way.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

Youghal RNLI launched to the aid of two people whose moored yacht was taking on water yesterday morning (Monday 20 May).

The volunteer lifeboat crew was requested to launch by the Irish Coast Guard at 10.01am following a report that a 26ft leisure craft was taking on water.

hHelmed by Liam Keogh, the inshore lifeboat was on scene within minutes, in clear conditions.

The casualty boat was tied up at its moorings in Youghal Harbour, with the two people onboard trying to pump the water out with a hand pump.

Two lifeboat crew boarded the vessel with a salvage pump and made sure the people onboard were well. They then used the salvage pump to pump the water out.

The lifeboat crew requested the coastguard for quayside assistance and towed the leisure craft safely back to the slip where it was taken ashore on a trailer.

Speaking later, Youghal RNLI helm Liam Keogh said: “This was a smooth callout for the crew and we were delighted to be able to help.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Youghal RNLI is encouraging people to respect the water and heed key water safety messages ahead of summer.

The East Cork lifeboat station’s community safety team will be running a number of events throughout the summer and are inviting individuals and groups to get in touch if they would like the team to speak to them.

Mick Walsh, Youghal RNLI’s volunteer community safety officer, said while the RNLI wants people to have a fun and enjoyable summer, the charity also wants people to do that with safety in mind.

“Whether you are a swimmer, a watersports enthusiast, an angler, a boater or just enjoy walking on the beach, it is important for you to understand that there are risks involved with all water and water-side activities.

“It doesn’t matter what your activity might be, or how many times you’ve done it, accidents can happen.

“Part of our role is to help educate and share our knowledge with the public. We want to talk to people, to help them understand the risks better and to listen to their experiences.”

Walsh said the RNLI has lots of safety advice on how to respect the water.

“Most people who end up in trouble at the coast didn’t intend being in the water so it’s important to know what do to if you do get into difficulty and end up in cold water.

“The RNLI’s national drowning prevention campaign is called Respect the Water and lots of information can be found on the dedicated site www.RespectTheWater.com, including how to float should you get into difficulty.

“We want people to learn and remember simple messages such as how to call for help. Dial 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard if you or someone you see is in trouble.

“We can help people choose the best communication device for their activity. We also want people to wear a lifejacket or floatation device when on the water.

“Again we can help you choose the right PFD for your activity. We will also show you how to take care of your PFD properly.”

To get in touch with Youghal RNLI’s community safety team, contact Mick Walsh at [email protected]

You can also keep an eye on Youghal RNLI’s Facebook page for more information detailing the RNLI’s Respect the Water campaign, which launches later this month, and to find out when the community safety team is active.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

Castletownbere’s RNLI lifeboat sprang into action to help locate a tourist reported missing on Dursey Island in West Cork yesterday afternoon (Friday 17 May).

The lifeboat, under the command of coxswain Dean Hegarty, launched shortly after 2pm after Valentia Coast Guard radio received reports that a visitor to the island off the Beara Peninsula had gone missing.

Also tasked were the Shannon-based Irish Coast Guard helicopter Rescue 115, Derrynane Inshore Rescue Boat and the Naval Service vessel LÉ Ciara.

Once on scene, the lifeboat commenced a search of the area while Rescue 115 did a sweep of the island and spotted a person who fitted the description of the casualty.

The coastguard helicopter lowered a winchman and confirmed that the casualty was safe and well. All emergency services were then stood down.

Commenting on the callout, launching authority Paddy O’Connor said: “We are delighted at the very swift response of the crew and that the casualty was located safe and well.”

Published in Rescue

Exactly one week after he was passed out as a helm on Kinsale’s Atlantic 85 lifeboat, Miss Sally Anne Baggy II, 21-year-old Jonathan Connor rescued a swimmer from the sea close to Sandycove Island in Co Cork.

Miss Sally Anne Baggy II was tasked by Valentia Coast Guard just after 8am yesterday (Wednesday 15 May) when three swimmers reported that the fourth member of their party was missing.

Jonathan — who, along with fellow volunteer Lenny Fourie, was passed out as an RNLI helm last Wednesday 8 May — knew time was of the essence as the swimmer had been in the water for a considerable length of time.

Using his RNLI training and local knowledge, Jonathan quickly located the swimmer and in under 15 minutes had brought him to safety.

The swimmer, who displayed signs of exhaustion and hypothermia, was treated by paramedics at the lifeboat station and was able to return home.

Jonathan, a student at CIT, is one of the youngest helms in the RNLI fleet but is already an experienced sailor and a qualified commercial diver.

Kinsale RNLI lifeboat operations manager Kevin Gould said: “Time was of the essence today and thankfully the swimmer is safe and well and we wish them a speedy recovery. It was a baptism of fire for Jonathan but he ran a textbook operation.

“As always in the RNLI, it was down to teamwork, but Jonathan showed great leadership. He worked very hard to earn his place as a helm, and his training has paid off. We are all very proud of him.”

Respect the Water is the RNLI’s national drowning prevention campaign. If you see anyone in trouble at the coast or get into difficulties yourself, dial 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Wicklow RNLI’s new relief Shannon class lifeboat Jock and Annie Slater has had its fifth callout since going on station over a month ago to assist a motor cruiser with engine failure.

The all-weather lifeboat slipped her moorings at 4.50pm on Tuesday afternoon (7 May) to aid the 12-metre cruiser with eight people on board, which had set out from Wales and was crossing the Irish Sea to Malahide when it developed mechanical problems and lost all propulsion.

The skipper contacted the coastguard by marine VHF radio for assistance.

Wicklow’s lifeboat was alongside the casualty at 5.45pm about 19 miles offshore. Conditions in the area had a south-east Force 2 with a slight sea state and good visibility.

A tow line was established and the motor cruiser was taken in tow back to Wicklow Harbour where it was bought alongside the East Pier and all eight on board landed safely ashore.

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