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Displaying items by tag: RNLI

Aran Islands RNLI responded to two call-outs last night and early this morning to carry out a medical evacuation and come to the aid of a lone sailor.

The volunteer crew was first asked to launch their all-weather lifeboat at 11 pm on Monday night following a request from the Irish Coast Guard to transport a patient under medical advice to Rossaveal Harbour and on to a waiting ambulance.

The lifeboat under Coxswain John O’Donnell and with six crew members onboard, launched immediately and made their way to the scene to carry out the medical evacuation. Weather conditions at the time were good with calm waters.

Later in the early hours of this morning, the volunteer crew was requested to launch their lifeboat at 4.50am by the Irish Coast Guard following a report that a 38ft yacht with one sailor onboard had run aground in Kilronan Harbour after it's mooring line broke.

The lifeboat under Coxswain John O'Donnell launched once again and went to the aid of the yacht. Weather conditions at this time were good with calm seas.

Once on scene, the crew proceeded to launch the lifeboat’s small inflatable daughter boat which is used in rescues to access areas near rocks and shallow waters. The three crew members onboard this y-boat made their way to the stranded yacht where two crew members then boarded the yacht and first assessed that the sailor was safe and well before assisting him with the incoming tide to free his yacht from her grounding.

Speaking following the call out, Lena O’Connell, Aran Islands RNLI Lifeboat Press Officer said: ‘While our volunteers are always prepared for the pager to go off at any time, it is unusual to get back to back call outs in quick succession during the night. We would like to wish both the patient who required a medical evacuation off the island and the lone sailor all the best'.

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Valentia RNLI volunteers launched their all-weather lifeboat Saturday evening (8 May) to assist a fisherman with crush injuries to the chest on board a fishing trawler.

At 7.28pm the Valentia Coast Guard requested Valentia RNLI all-weather lifeboat to launch to an injured fisherman on board a 34-metre French fishing trawler. The vessel at the time was 32 miles west of Valentia. Weather conditions at the time were good with clear visibility, a force four North West wind and a three-metre swell.

Once on scene, one of our lifeboat crew members was transferred to the fishing trawler to administer casualty care to the injured fisherman who had sustained crush injuries to the chest. The lifeboat crew member assessed and treated the fisherman for the injuries he sustained, while liaising with doctors in CUH on the fisherman’s condition. Keeping weather conditions in mind and the condition of the fisherman, it was decided that the best course of treatment would be to airlift the patient to the nearest emergency department.

Irish Coast Guard helicopter Rescue 115 was tasked to the incident and rendezvoused with the trawler. The winchman/paramedic was lowered onto the deck of the vessel and taken below deck to the fisherman. With the assistance of the lifeboat crew, the injured man was brought out on deck and winched on board the helicopter. The fisherman was then airlifted to University Hospital Kerry for further treatment.

Speaking following the call out, Valentia RNLI Coxswain Richard Quigley said: The volunteer crew responded quickly and made the fisherman, who was in a great deal of pain as comfortable as possible until they were able to hand over to the Irish Coast Guard.

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Clifden RNLI were tasked by the Irish Coast Guard on Saturday afternoon (8 June) to a distress signal received from a personal locator beacon (PLB) registered to a 50-foot yacht that had been activated some 13 miles west of Slyne Head.

Clifden’s all-weather and Atlantic 85 lifeboats both launched along with the Aran Islands lifeboat and the Shannon-based coastguard helicopter Rescue 115.

En route the lifeboats received updated information that the lone sailor had become trapped in his generator room. The boat had rolled hard to her beam and the door slammed shut.

He had already spent approximately two hours trying to open it and was very worried as the boat was on autopilot so he activated his PLB to raise the alarm.

Shortly afterwards he managed to free himself and immediately called Clifden Coastguard to inform them that he was okay, and that he had activated his PLB as at the time he had been in grave and imminent danger as he was not in control of his boat.

The lifeboats were requested to proceed to the casualty’s location and make verbal/visual contact with the skipper. He confirmed that he had been in a perilous position when he was trapped and the boat was indeed adrift and heading towards hazardous shoreline.

He was very relieved to learn that the rescue services were coming to his aid and he then made his own way into Clifden Bay.

Coxswain James Mullen said after the launch: “This really showed the value and importance of wearing a PLB as this skipper was totally trapped aboard his own boat and in grave danger.

“Luckily, his decision to carry this vital piece of safety equipment and then to activate his PLB meant that we were able to go to his aid and thankfully a much worse scenario was avoided.”

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Wicklow RNLI brought three sailors to safety yesterday morning (Sunday 9 June) after their 10-metre yacht got fouled in ropes off Wicklow Head.

The all-weather lifeboat Jock and Annie Slater put to sea shortly before 10am under the command of coxswain Nick Keogh, following a launch request from the Irish Coast Guard.

The yacht, with three people on board, was located at 10.12am about two-and-a-half miles south-east of Wicklow Head. Conditions on scene had a slight sea state and good visibility.

Lifeboat volunteer Alan Goucher was transferred onto the yacht to assess the situation and assist with the towline.

The yacht was taken in tow back to Wicklow Harbour and brought safely alongside the East Pier at 11.10am.

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Baltimore RNLI carried out a medevac last night (Friday 7 June) from Cape Clear Island off the coast of Baltimore in West Cork.

The volunteer crew launched their all-weather lifeboat at 6.20pm, following a request from the Irish Coast Guard to provide medical assistance and evacuation to an islander living on Cape Clear.

The lifeboat arrived at North Harbour in Cape Clear within 20 minutes, and was headed back to the mainland with the casualty on board after just a two-minute turnaround.

By just after 7pm the casualty had been handed over to the care of a HSE ambulance crew in Baltimore.

Conditions at sea during the call out were good, with a north-westerly Force 4-5 wind, a one-metre sea swell and very good visibility.

Speaking following the callout, lifeboat press officer Kate Callanan said: “If you find yourself in a medical emergency whilst on an island call 999 or 112 and explain to the operator what the nature of the call is.

“The operator will then make sure that the call is directed to both the coastguard and the National Ambulance Service. We wish the casualty a full recovery.

“Our thoughts today are also with the family, friends and colleagues of the crew members of the French lifeboat service SNSM who lost their lives yesterday during a rescue.”

There were seven volunteer crew onboard the lifeboat on this callout: coxswain Kieran Cotter, mechanic Cathal Cottrell and crew members Jerry Smith, Kieran Collins, Pat Collins, Colin Rochford and David Ryan. Assisting at the boathouse in Baltimore were Gerald O’Brien, Aidan Bushe and Don O’Donovan.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

New Clifden lifeboat volunteer Ashling Sweeney has her first callout earlier this week to a fisherman whose boat drifted out to sea after engine failure.

At 3.40pm on Tuesday 4 June, Clifden RNLI was requested to launch its all-weather and inshore lifeboats to assist the nine-metre fishing vessel with one onboard just east of Turbot Island in Co Galway.

Clifden’s Atlantic 85 lifeboat Joyce King, helmed by Daniel Whelan and with four volunteer crew onboard, launched first and made good time to the fishing vessel, which was drifting south.

The fishing vessel was quickly taken under tow back to Clifden pier as Clifden RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat launched to provide backup.

Weather conditions on scene had a north-west winds of Force 5-6 with a slight sea.

Speaking following the callout, new volunteer Ashling Sweeney said: “This was my first callout for Clifden RNLI today and I was happy to gain the experience of putting my training into action.”

Around the same time on Tuesday, Youghal RNLI in East Cork were requested to launch to an eight-metre yacht adrift in the harbour with no people onboard.

The volunteer crew launched their inshore lifeboat in a moderate north westerly breeze and were with the yacht within minutes.

On arrival, the crew determined that the yacht was dragging its mooring. A crew member boarded the yacht and cut the mooring line before the crew established a tow and bought the yacht safely back to the pontoon were the coastguard were waiting to assist.

Derry Walsh, Youghal RNLI lifeboat operations manager, said: “As we approach the summer season, we would remind sailors and boat owners to ensure the appropriate safety, engine and fuel checks are completed ahead of any trip as well as ensuring vessels are safely secured on their moorings.”

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Going out to sea has always had a certain level of risk attached to it. When a boat breaks down and starts to drift out towards America or worse towards a rocky shore, help has not always been close to hand writes Alex Blackwell. It used to be up to the local community to mount a rescue or recovery – if, that is, news got through to them and if there happened to be a boat available. Two-way radios were scarce and mobile phones had not even been dreamt up yet.

So it was in the mid-seventies when the Mulloy Brothers went out fishing only to be shipwrecked on one of the islands in Clew Bay when their engine failed. Word went out about the incident, but it was ‘spring’ low tide and most boats were high and dry. Two local boats did make it out, a punt and a larger motorboat. The brothers were ferried out to the larger boat and disaster was fortunately averted.

Mayo sailnig club membersMayo Sailing Club members and the Lifeboat crew enjoying an evening after sailing at the MSC clubhouse in Rosmoney

Efforts were made right after this incident to get a lifeboat for Clew Bay, where there were numerous part-time fishermen and the Clew Bay Oyster Co-operative had just been formed. Mayo Sailing Club had also just been formed, heralding the advent of an ever-increasing fleet of sail and power boats on the bay. It wasn’t however until twenty years later, in 1995, that the RNLI station at Kildavnet, Achill Island was established.

Mayo Sailing Club has been going strong ever since it was founded. With over 300 members and more than 60 boats in the harbour, MSC members love to get out on beautiful Clew Bay and beyond. Along with the fishermen in and around Clew Bay, MSC members very much appreciate knowing that the RNLI and Coast Guard have their backs. At a recent event, they gladly reached into their pockets and €1,000 was raised for the RNLI.

"Mayo Sailing Club is delighted to be associated with and support the RNLI Achill lifeboat. It is a tremendous asset and reassurance to have them here on possibly Europe's most isolated, rugged, but beautiful coastline. Well done and thank you all those who voluntarily give their time to this," Duncan Sclare, MSC Commodore

“As leisure users of the great seas that surround us it is important that we support a safe and responsible use of this fantastic resource. The RNLI are the agency of first response to boats in distress. We plan to never need to use the maritime rescue services, however, we have the security of knowing that the RNLI will react to requests for assistance and our donation is a small recognition of the great service provided by this voluntary organisation,” Conn Lavelle, MSC Sailing Secretary.

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Both Crosshaven and Kinsale RNLI lifeboats were launched at 11am this morning (Sunday 2 June) to assist a 17’ boat with one person on board, broken down off Roberts Cove in a strengthening Force 6/7 westerly wind.

The angling boat 'Deora De’ was nearby and responded to the distress call and took the casualty vessel under tow towards Crosshaven and met with Crosshaven lifeboat a mile South of Roches Point. Due to the poor Sea state and in agreement with the skipper of the 'Deora De', they continued the tow to Roches Point and calmer water before handing over the tow to the lifeboat who then brought the vessel into Crosshaven. Kinsale lifeboat was stood down when the Coast Guard were aware of the 'Deora De’s' intervention.

"A 17’ boat with one person on board was broken down off Roberts Cove in a strengthening Force 6/7 westerly wind"

The lifeboat was crewed by James Fegan with Molly Murphy, Susanne Deane and Jenna O’Shea. Shore crew were Mick Canty, Jonny Birmingham, Derek Moynan, Vince Fleming and Sandra Farrell.

Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer, Jon Mathers commented that the arrival of the angling boat ‘Deora De’ so quickly helped a situation that could have been catastrophic as the casualty boat was only 100 metres from the rocks and had an anchor which was dragging, compounded by the vessel being anchored by the stern into the weather. We would like to note our appreciation to the Skipper of the ‘Deora De’ for his timely intervention.

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Larne RNLI has a close-knit group of volunteers, both crew members and fundraisers, with a strong family ethos and team approach to ensure everyone plays their part to help saves lives at sea on the east Co Antrim coast.

Recently, one of these volunteers — Barry Kirkpatrick, a local teacher — completed his assessments to qualify as an RNLI all-weather lifeboat coxswain.

“Being an RNLI volunteer is a big commitment but working alongside like-minded people, to help those in distress at sea, is very rewarding,” Barry said.

“It’s very much a team approach at Larne RNLI with a fantastic camaraderie within the crew.”

The commitment to the lifeboat isn't only measured in the time spent involved in rescues, but also in the essential weekly training scenarios.

The volunteers in Larne RNLI, who come from all walks of life, train six times per month to ensure they are fully trained on all aspects of rescues including keeping up to date with new and evolving equipment.

With only one in 10 lifeboat crew members having professional maritime experience, the charity’s comprehensive competency-based crew training is vital to saving lives at sea.

And when the pagers do go off, volunteers are ready to drop everything as they’re called away from their families, their beds and their work, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

“Our crews train extensively across a broad spectrum to gain the skills and knowledge necessary to be a member of the lifeboat crew,” says Larne RNLI coxswain Frank Healy. “This means giving time and dedication to meet the requirements.

“This was realised recently when Barry, after long, intensive and wide-ranging training, was passed out successfully as an all-weather lifeboat coxswain. A great achievement for Barry who is a very valuable asset to Larne station.”

In 2019 Larne RNLI is celebrating 25 years of local volunteers providing its rescue service to the Larne area. Over the last 25 years, Larne lifeboats have launched 514 times, saving 34 lives and rescuing 454 people, with an average of 21 shouts a year.

To celebrate the work of volunteers and the support the local community have provided, Larne RNLI are holding an open day at the lifeboat station on Olderfleet Road on Saturday 22 June from 12pm-4pm.

Everyone is welcome to come along, meet the volunteers and enjoy a fun-filled day with a BBQ, bouncy castles, our mascot Stormy Stan and lots more.

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Lough Ree RNLI Volunteers assisted in the reach of a suspected missing person who had become separated from the jet ski they were on.

Yesterday, 2 June 2019 at 7.05pm the Irish Coast Guard in Malin Head tasked Lough Ree RNLI together with Irish Coast Guard Helicopter Rescue 118 and other agencies on Lough Ree including Athlone Sub Aqua Club, Lough Ree Sub Aqua Club and Roscommon Civil Defence to search for a person who had called for help after falling from their jet ski. The location of the casualty was unknown and conditions on the lake at the time were very rough with strong winds from the south-west.

All agencies conducted an extensive surface and aerial search for a number of hours with nothing to report. The Irish Coast Guard stood the search down at 10.30pm.

Speaking after the search was stood down, Lifeboat Operations Manager, Tony McCarthy said: “If you are using the lake you should always carry a means of communication, either VHF radio or mobile phone and ensure if they are not waterproof that you have them in a watertight bag so you can call for help easily if and when needed.”

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