Displaying items by tag: Lifeboats
It emerged that the surfers had paddled out beyond the surf line and were being swept further and further offshore — the tide and wind preventing them from making their way back.
First on scene was the inshore lifeboat Buoy Woody with her crew of three, having been guided to the precise location — around half a mile offshore at the Footdee end of Aberdeen Beach — by coastguard volunteers ashore.
The two experienced surfers were uninjured but said they were both exhausted, having been in the water for almost two hours. They and their equipment were taken aboard the lifeboat to be returned to shore.
However, with the tide approaching high water, violent surf running up the beach, and the lifeboat RIB loaded to capacity, it was decided to transfer the surfers to the all-weather lifeboat Bon Accord which had arrived in the calmer water beyond the surf line.
Cal Reed, Aberdeen lifeboat’s coxswain on this service, says: “The member of the public who made the initial phone call did the right thing: if you think you see someone in difficulty at sea, always call 999 and ask for the coastguard.”
Elsewhere, on Friday afternoon (25 September) Belfast Coastguard in Northern Ireland requested Troon RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat to assist Arran RNLI with a vessel it had taken under tow to Ardrossan in Western Scotland with its Atlantic 85 inshore vessel.
With Ireland's coastal areas getting a lot quieter as autumn begins and as we head towards winter, this can decrease the chances of someone near by spotting you in danger or in difficulty, such as getting caught out by the rising tide.
So, it’s more crucial than ever to plan ahead — and bring a means of communication to call for help if needed.
If you get caught out while walking on the coast, or see someone else getting into difficulty, always call 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard.
In other news, the RNLI has joined up with the RYA for a new series of videos with advise on how to safely enjoy being on the water.
Yachts and Yachting reports that the water safety videos — which will also cover topics such as electronic navigation, the shipping forecast and best practice when riding a personal watercraft — will be shared on the RYA and RNLI’s social media channels.
Youghal RNLI was called to the scene at Caliso Bay in Co Waterford on Friday afternoon after the man was reported missing to the coastguard.
A lifeboat crew member quickly spotted the casualty in the water and he was brought on board. Volunteers started CPR while the lifeboat returned to station.
CPR continued in the boathouse until paramedics arrived. However, the man was pronounced dead by a doctor shortly after.
“All members of Youghal RNLI would like to offer their sincere condolences to the man’s family and friends at the sad time,” said the station’s press officer Lou Stepney-Power.
“I would like to thank all the lifeboat and medical crew involved today for their efforts in a difficult situation.”
Youghal RNLI launched three times the following day, Saturday 19 September.
The first was in the morning, to assist two people on a small boat with engine trouble in Youghal Harbour.
Just after noon, the crew were paged to reports of a person on the rocks at Easter Point. But on scene it was established the person was a kayaker exploring the area and did not need assistance.
Later, the lifeboat launched to reports of a child in the water of Ardmore but was stood down as the crew of the Irish Coast Guard’s Waterford-based helicopter Rescue 117 airlifted the casualty for treatment.
Lifeboat operations manager Derry Walsh thanked the crews for their efforts. “We have responded to four callouts in 24 hours, I think that could be a station record,” he said.
The retired nurse, who serves as the Donegal island station’s press officer, first got involved with the RNLI in 1995 when she became the first female crew member to join Arranmore’s all-weather lifeboat crew.
“I remember my first call out well,” Nora recalls. :We were involved in an all-night search for a fisherman who fell overboard a trawler and I remembering finding that challenging.
“The next day my pager went off again, this time for a medical evacuation. I was more confident on this callout when I was helping the injured person. It was then I realised and understood that there is a role for everybody who wants to join a lifeboat crew.”
Nora also got involved with the local fundraising team and later became the station’s volunteer lifeboat press officer, a role she still holds.
“This involves writing news releases and doing local radio interviews after callouts and keeping in touch with the local media about any activity that is going on at the station such as safety awareness and education, fundraising and events.”
One of the highlights over the years was a visit to the RNLI College in Poole, where Nora was asked to represent the RNLI in Ireland for the launch of Volunteer Spirit, a lifeboat which was funded by selling badges.
“That was a huge honour for me personally, but overall, I have had an exceptional 25 years with the RNLI and I love being part of an organisation that is one big family.”
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, Nora could not be presented with her medal in person but said she was delighted to receive the recognition from the RNLI, which came with a warm word of thanks from the charity for having achieved over 20 years of extraordinary service.
The Shannon class lifeboat set off shortly after 1pm on Wednesday 9 September and located the yacht 20 minutes later, six miles north of Wicklow Harbour.
Conditions on scene had a moderate sea state with northwesterly Force 4 winds.
A towline was quickly established and the yacht was towed back towards Wicklow harbour, where the two sailors were landed safely ashore at 2.30pm.
The crew on the callout were coxswain Ciaran Doyle, mechanic Brendan Copeland, David O’Leary, Carol Flahive, Ian Heffernan and Andrew Carlin.
The lifeboat Jean Spicer launched just before 9.20pm and used all onboard electronic navigation aids to locate cruiser, which was adrift by Bellevue Point.
On request, the three people on board the cruiser flashed a light for the lifeboat crew as they approached, and great care was taken to bring the lifeboat alongside the casualty vessel which had drifted into reeds close to the shore.
All on board were dafe and unharmed, and the motorboat was brought under tow to Dromineer Harbour.
Deputy launching authority Peter Kennedy advises boat users to “make sure your engines are fully serviced, and that you have sufficient fuel for your journey.
“Always carry enough lifejackets for everyone on board and that they are worn.”
The callout marked the third to a cruiser in difficulty in as many days for the Lough Derg crew — following a 35ft cruiser aground by the Silver Islands on Monday evening (7 September) and a vessel with engine failure near Mountshannon Harbour on Sunday (6 September).
The inshore lifeboat Jean Spicer diverted from a training exercise just before 2pm and made way to the reported location.
With no vessel in sight, the lifeboat crew made radio contact with the stricken vessel, which it turned out had drifted close to rocks east of the Scilly Isles.
The two on board the 27ft cruiser were safe and unharmed, and wearing lifejackets.
A lifeboat crew member was put aboard and discerned that the cruiser has suffered a gearbox failure.
A tow was then set up to bring the broken down vessel back to Mountshannon Harbour, and within an hour the lifeboat had returned to Dromineer Bay to complete its exercise.
‘Even on the calmest days, inflatable toys are not fit for the conditions you will experience along our coastline’
Elsewhere on Sunday afternoon, Arklow RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat Ger Tigchlearr launched to reports of a person in difficulty in a small inflatable boat off Mizen Head.
Once the crew was on scene, the individual tried to make his way back to shore while the lifeboat stood by.
But the rocky coastline and prevailing tidal conditions made this difficult, so it was agreed the safest option was to take the person on board the lifeboat.
Following the incident, Arklow RNLI’s community safety officer Mark Corcoran said: “Thankfully this afternoon was relatively calm, had conditions been worse the situation might not have ended so well.
“In recent weeks there has been a lot of rescues all around our coastline of people from small inflatable boats and toys.
“We’d like to remind people of the real risk of drowning when you go to sea on vessels of this nature, even on the calmest days these types of boats and toys are not fit for the conditions you will experience along our coastline.”
Pagers sounded at 7.10pm and the all-weather lifeboat was launched, its crew locating the stricken yacht some five miles east of the Kish Lighthouse.
The vessel had suffered rigging and engine damage and was unable to make way so the lifeboat crew took it under tow to the safety of Poolbeg Marina, where it was tied up at 10.45pm.
Howth RNLI reported that the lone yachtsman was in good spirits despite his ordeal.
Speaking after the callout, lifeboat coxswain Fred Connolly said: “Our volunteer lifeboat crew are always ready to respond to a call for help and we train for situations just like this.
“We were delighted to able to quickly locate the sailing boat, commence the tow and bring the sailor safely back to Dublin Port.”
Shortly before 8.30pm, the Skerries lifeboat crew were tasked to investigate multiple reports of a red distress flare in the vicinity of the North Beach in Rush.
The Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat Louis Simson was launched and the crew made their way to Rush, liasing en route with a yacht in the area which also confirmed the sighting.
With no immediate signs of a vessel in distress on scene, the lifeboat entered a search pattern — joined shortly after by the Irish Coast Guard’s Dublin-based helicopter Rescue 116 as Skerries’ local coastguard unit searched on land.
Eventually it was determined the flare had likely been fired from land. But as soon as the search was stood down, all services were called to Balbriggan where a man had fallen from a cliff
Rescue 116 was first on scene and its winchman began casualty care, and the lifeboat sent a crew member ashore to assist before the casualty was winched up and airlifted to hospital for further treatment.
“This turned into a long evening for all the rescue services involved,” said Skerries lifeboat press officer Gerry Canning.
“Thankfully it was a good outcome and another great example of how well all the services work together to help anyone in distress.”
Locals out for a stroll in blustery conditions that trailed Storm Francis spotted the solo cetacean, and the local lifeboat crew sought help from the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) as for how to proceed.
Their advice was to encourage the dolphin into deeper water if possible, and Fenit RNLI went into action, assisted by local sea vessels in the area the time.
Thanks to their joint effort, the dolphin was gently steered in the direction of open water — and its hoped the marine mammal is now safety swimming at sea.
Lifeboat press officer Jackie Murphy said: “This is an opportunity to remember that the lifeboat crews are volunteers and this is one of the rare occasions where Fenit RNLI experience saving an animal.”