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Displaying items by tag: Lifeboats

A volunteer crew member at Lough Derg RNLI has become a trauma risk management practitioner for the Dromineer station.

Chris Parker graduated from the RNLI’s Trauma Risk Management Programme (TRiM) this past April.

The TRiM programme aims to provide confidential support and assistance for volunteers who may be dealing with the psychological effects of attending traumatic or distressing callouts.

Currently there are 60 TRiM practitioners within the RNLI across the UK and Ireland — including Parker, who joined the Co Tipperary lifeboat crew two-and-a-half years ago, shortly after moving to the area with his family.

Now a qualified lifeboat crew member, Parker is also Lough Derg RNLI’s health, safety and environmental local liaison.

“I am proud to be able to help fellow volunteers,” he says.

“Sometimes we run towards the bad stuff, and it can take its toll. As a crew member, I want to be there for the members of the public when they are in difficulty, but as a practitioner, I want to be there for my fellow volunteer crew members in the RNLI who may be having their worst day, too.”

As the RNLI is a frontline volunteer emergency service, its crews encounter scenarios and casualty injuries they may never confront in their day jobs.

And in spite of rigorous training in casualty care, volunteers respond differently to the reality of what they’ve encountered.

In most instances following traumatic events, crew will resolve any negative feelings over time. “TRiM is there to support our staff and volunteers from an early stage, to offer peer support,” Parker says.

“To those that require professional help, the TRiM practitioners have the knowledge and training to signpost those services and support.”

All training for frontline staff or volunteers is provided by the RNLI through its partner March on Stress. Parker says that to retain practitioner status, he must meet professional standards through continuous training.

He explains that the initial two-day intensive course covered active listening skills, mentoring, education and risk assessment.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Skerries RNLI launched to the aid of a man who had fallen from the cliffs in Loughshinny yesterday afternoon (Sunday 5 September).

The lifeboat volunteers were tasked by Dublin Coast Guard after a 999 call was received reporting that a man had fallen from the clifftop and was trapped on the rocks below.

Shortly after 1pm the Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat Louis Simson was launched and arrived on scene within minutes. The crew quickly spotted the man at the base of the cliff face with some people assisting him.

The lifeboat was manoeuvred as close as possible to the shoreline and was greeted by one of the assistants. They were members of a diving club who had been returning from a dive nearby when they heard the man’s cries for help.

Following a quick briefing on the casualty’s condition, two of the crew made their way ashore to further assess him and perform first aid.

The Irish Coast Guard’s Dublin-based helicopter Rescue 116 was also tasked and landed on the beach at Loughshinny, where the casualty was brought by the lifeboat and put on board the aircraft for transfer to Beaumont Hospital.

Less than 24 hours earlier, at 3.30pm on Saturday afternoon (4 September), the volunteer crew launched to a distress call from a small sailing cruiser with two people on board.

The vessel had suffered steering failure between Skerries and Balbriggan and those on board were struggling to make their way to safety.

Almost immediately after launching, the lifeboat made contact with the stricken vessel as they had managed to regain very limited steering and make their way closer to Skerries.

The lifeboat stood by while the vessel approached the harbour and then assisted them in tying up along the pier.

With the help of one of the station volunteers and a local angler, the steering component that had been damaged was successfully repaired and the pair were able to continue on their journey.

Speaking about the callouts, Skerries RNLI press officer Gerry Canning said: “This was another great example of how well all the emergency services work together, with volunteers and professionals working side by side to ensure the best possible outcome.

“We’d also like to say thank you to the gentlemen from Alpha Dive sub aqua club who did a brilliant job in raising the alarm and assisting the casualty until help arrived.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Dunmore East RNLI’s lifeboat volunteers were delighted to receive monies raised from the sales of the book charting the history of the Co Waterford lifeboat.

Dauntless Courage: Celebrating the History of the Dunmore East RNLI, Their Crews and the Maritime Heritage of the Local Community was written, published and sold out during lockdown a year ago.

Restrictions and lockdowns made it impossible for author David Carroll to be in Dunmore East while writing his book, But thankfully David and his family were able to visit the Dunmore Lifeboat station recently, where he was wholeheartedly welcomed by the local lifeboat volunteers.

David is the son of Captain Desmond Carroll, a former Harbour Master in Dunmore. He grew up in Dunmore East and through he moved away from the village in his 20s to pursue a career, he says he has retained a great love for the maritime heritage he inherited growing up in the village.

The book is described as a labour of love, involving several years of researching and writing. The RNLI supported the project, with members of Dunmore East RNLI forming a publishing committee and a total of 66 businesses contributing to the cost of printing. It means that all proceeds go to the charity that saves lives at sea.

Dunmore East RNLI volunteers with author David Carrol and his family at the lifeboat station | Credit: RNLI/Neville MurphyDunmore East RNLI volunteers with author David Carrol and his family at the lifeboat station | Credit: RNLI/Neville Murphy

Recently David was finally able to hand over the huge cheque to the very appreciative volunteers of Dunmore East RNLI.

“I felt very privileged to have been invited to write a history of the Dunmore East lifeboats,” he said. “I enjoyed every single minute carrying out the necessary research and writing the various chapters, but the success of the book is down to all the volunteers and the great team, organised by Brendan Dunne who promoted, packaged, and distributed the book in difficult circumstances.

“A special word of thanks is due to all who gave us permission to use their interesting photographs and wonderful paintings. Our printers, DVF Print and Graphic Solutions, designed and produced a magnificent book that we all can be proud of and will be a fitting testament to all who served in the station since the Henry Dodd first arrived in Dunmore East.

Brendan Dunne of Dunmore East RNLI’s crew said: “As volunteer crew of the Dunmore East lifeboat, we are delighted with David’s book Dauntless Courage and grateful for such a significant amount being raised for our charity.

“The book itself is well written and researched. It truly captures the legacy of those that have crewed the lifeboats here since 1884 and of the lifesaving and maritime heritage of the village. It ensures their contribution to saving lives at sea in all weather conditions will not be forgotten.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Carrybridge RNLI’s inshore lifeboat and rescue water craft were launched yesterday afternoon (Saturday 28 August) to assess a vessel in distress with five people on board.

The sport cruiser had run aground some two miles upstream from Bellanaleck in the vicinity of Tamlaght Bay.

Upon arrival, the lifeboat crew assessed the vessel and those on board, and determined that the boat was slightly aground in its present position.

With the owner’s permission, the cruiser was refloated and an alongside tow was set up to bring it into deeper water.

Further checks were carried out and the vessel was found to be in perfect working order before it was allowed to continue its journey.

Speaking following the callout, Chris Cathcart of Carrybridge RNLI offered advice for boat uses this UK bank holiday weekend.

“We would ask that everyone have a means of calling for assistance if you find yourself in trouble, have lifejackets for all on board and plan their journey using the relevant charts.

“If you see someone in trouble on the water or are in difficulties yourself the number to dial is 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Portaferry RNLI were called out yesterday evening (Thursday 26 August) at 5.44pm after members of the public reported three people in the water after their small punt capsized on Strangford Lough in Northern Ireland.

Helmed by Fergal Glynn and with two crew onboard, the lifeboat was on scene close to the Walter rocks within minutes and the volunteers recovered the casualties from the water one by one.

After ensuring they did not require any medical assistance, the lifeboat crew took the casualties ashore and transferred them into the care of Portaferry coastguard rescue team.

The lifeboat crew then returned to the capsized punt to right it and take it under tow to Cook Street Quay.

Less than 24 hours before, on Wednesday evening (25 August), the lifeboat volunteers were called out to reports of two kayakers thought to be in difficulty off Kilclief in Co Down.

The lifeboat, helmed by Chris Adair and with two crew onboard, launched shortly after 8.30pm and was on scene at the Strangford Narrows within minutes.

However, after a thorough search of the area the volunteer crew found nothing of concern and returned to station at 9.25pm.

Commenting on both callouts, Portaferry RNLI press officer Jordan Conway said: “Our initial callout turned out to be a false alarm with good intent. The second callout was also initiated by a concerned member of the public and we would like to thank all members of the public for being so alert and taking the appropriate action.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

Lough Derg RNLI’s lifeboat volunteers were diverted from exercise in Dromineer Bay last night (Thursday 26 August) to assist two people on a 12ft fishing boat with engine failure just off the Goat Road, on the eastern shore of the lough.

The RNLI crew plotted a course to the Goat Road, and as the made their way under nightfall they monitored the fast moving vessels operating in the area on radar.

Arriving on scene within 20 minutes, the lifeboat was directed to the casualty vessel by the people on board using torches.

The fishing boat was floating close to a rocky shore south of the Goat Road, so the lifeboat made a cautious approach.

Once alongside, the lifeboat crew found both people on board safe and unharmed and wearing their lifejackets. The duo reported that their boat had glanced off a rock and suffered engine failure.

Given the hour and the drop in temperature, lifeboat helm Eleanor Hooker decided the safest option was to set up an alongside tow and take the vessel with her passengers to Dromineer, the safest close harbour.

Without sufficient warm clothing, the two people took shelter in the forward cabin of their boat until it was safety tied alongside in Dromineer before 11.20pm.

Peter Kennedy, deputy launching authority at Lough Derg RNLI, advises all water users to “study your charts and be prepared; anticipate a drop in temperature with nightfall”.

The lifeboat crew on this callout were Eleanor Hooker, Doireann Kennedy, Tom Hayes and Ciara Lynch.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Wexford RNLI launched this morning (Wednesday 25 August) to rescue three people after their powerboat suffered engine failure.

The volunteer crew launched their inshore lifeboat at 10.12am and arrived at the scene to assess the situation five minutes later.

All three on board the powerboat were found to be in good health.

The lifeboat crew set up a tow and the three people were safely brought ashore at 10.27am with no injuries.

Weather conditions at the time were calm, with a Force 2 north-easterly wind and good visibility.

Speaking following the callout, Wexford RNLI press officer Lorraine Galvin said: “We would advise water users to ensure your boat equipment and engine are in good working order and to always carry a means of communication.

“If anyone sees anyone in difficulty on or near the water, ring 999/112 and ask for the coastguard.”

Skerries RNLI approaching a small sailing vessel adrift off Lambay Island on Monday 23 August | Credit: RNLI/Gerry CanningSkerries RNLI approaching a small sailing vessel adrift off Lambay Island on Monday 23 August | Credit: RNLI/Gerry Canning

Elsewhere on the East Coast, Skerries RNLI were tasked on Monday morning (23 August) to investigate reports of a raft adrift near Lambay island.

The raft reported by a fishing vessel in the area turned out to be a small sailing dinghy that had come adrift from a mooring somewhere.

With patches of heavy fog in the area, the boat presented a collision hazard to other vessels in the area so the decision was taken to bring it back to Skerries.

Speaking about the callout, Skerries RNLI press officer Gerry Canning said: “Thankfully there was nobody in trouble in this instance. However, the fishing vessel made the right call contacting the coastguard to report it.”

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A crew of nine were rescued by Galway RNLI last night (Tuesday 24 August) after their RIB ran aground in Ballyvaughan Bay.

With the boat’s propeller and engine damaged, the crew used VHF communications to alert the Irish Coast Guard who immediately sought the assistance of Galway RNLI's inshore lifeboat.

The lifeboat launched from Galway Docks at about 10pm. Conditions were calm and dark when the lifeboat crew located the stricken vessel some 20 minutes later.

All nine crew on board the 6.5m boat were wearing lifejackets and did not need any medical assistance.

Galway RNLI's volunteer lifeboat crew of helm Brian Nilan, James Rhattigan, Dave McGrath and Cathal Bryne took the boat in tow to Parkmore Pier near Kinvara.

Galway RNLI deputy launching authority Seán Óg Leydon said: “The crew of the vessel acted quickly by dropping anchor straight away and contacting the Irish Coast Guard.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Achill Island RNLI were delighted yesterday evening (Monday 23 August) to be able to bring home a patient they had medically evacuated from Inishturk almost two months ago.

The volunteer lifeboat crew had provided a medevac for 88-year-old John O’Toole from his home on Inishturk on 28 June, bringing him to Achill Island where he was transferred to Mayo University Hospital suffering from a severe infection.

He was later moved to a nursing home where he remained for four weeks before becoming well enough to finally return home.

John was surrounded by his wife Mary and daughters Phil Kilbane and Anne Maher prior to his departure from Achill Island in flat calm sea conditions and glorious evening sunshine.

Speaking of her father’s dramatic recovery, Anne said: “The doctor told us Dad could have died if the lifeboat didn’t take him off the island back in June.”

Echoing the appreciation of her sister, Phil Kilbane said: “The people of both Clare Island and Inishturk are forever grateful for the help and assistance of Achill Island RNLI to the islanders.

“A big thank you to the crew who volunteer their time, day and night, and for bringing our Dad back home safely this evening.”

Prior to the departure, local family Katie and John Sweeney and their son Seamus Tiernan were present on the pier to wave John off.

Seamus, a talented and well-known musician, played some traditional Irish tunes for John, much to his delight, as he boarded the all-weather lifeboat Sam and Ada Moody.

Achill Island RNLI recently bade farewell to long-serving lifeboat operations manager Tony McNamara, who retired after more than three decades of service, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

Dunmore East RNLI’s lifeboat volunteers leapt into action on the report of a dog that fell over a 30m cliff near the Co Wexford town yesterday afternoon (Thursday 19 August).

The inshore lifeboat was launched at 2pm at the request of the Irish Coast Guard to locate the little pooch, which had gone over the cliff edge a half a mile to the east of Portally Cove.

Eight minutes later the lifeboat arrived on scene and signed the dog on a ledge at the bottom of the cliff.

Two crew launched the lifeboat’s XP boat and made their way to the cliff base, where one of them was able to climb onto the rocks and rescue Ellie the dog.

Thankfully Ellie was unharmed after her ordeal, and was swiftly brought back to Dunmore East Harbour where she was happily reunited with her family.

Roy Abrahamsson, Dunmore East RNLI coxswain, said: “Weather conditions were good at the time and our volunteer crew did a great job in rescuing little Ellie.

“Our concern with incidents like this is that dog owners may try to get down the cliff after the dog while endangering themselves. Thankfully this was not the case this time; the owners did the right thing in calling for help.”

Yesterday’s callout marks one of the last in Dunmore East for the Trent class lifeboat Elizabeth and Ronald, which is set to be replaced by a new €2.4 million Shannon class vessel next month. Afloat.ie has more on that story HERE.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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