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Displaying items by tag: Irish Coast Guard

The Oireachtas Public Accounts Committee has heard that the Irish Coast Guard’s rescue helicopter service costs the state around €60 million annually.

An initial 10-year contract with CHC Ireland to provide services with Sikorsky S-92 helicopters from four bases began in 2012 and was initially valued at €500 million.

As reported in The Irish Times yesterday, Thursday 28 May, Department of Transport secretary general Ken Spratt told the PAC that this cost will have risen to €650 million by 2022 but that it is “not a fixed-cost contract” and is “broadly in line with expectations at the outset”.

He also confirmed that one of three contract extensions has been exercised and CHC Ireland will continue to provide the coastguard SAR service until at least July 2023.

The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.

Published in Coastguard

Howth’s Irish Coast Guard cliff team sprang into action yesterday evening (Sunday 16 May) to rescue a dog trapped on a sea cliff at Red Rock in Sutton.

Freddie the dog had fallen 10 metres down the cliff face while walking with his owners and was stranded on a ledge in the rock.

The coastguard team acted quickly, setting up for an abseil before a rescue climber was lowered to retrieve Freddie and safety reunite him with his relieved owners on the beach below.

“Freddie’s owners did the right thing when the dog got trapped. They didn’t attempt a self rescue and contacted the coastguard on 999,” the Howth unit said.

“We encourage the public to contact the coastguard if they see people attempt a rescue.”

Published in Rescue

Skerries RNLI’s volunteers launched their inshore lifeboat on Wednesday evening (21 April) as part of a multi-agency response to reports of a swimmer in difficulty near the Martello tower in Balbriggan.

The Atlantic 85 lifeboat Louis Simson was launched within minutes of the crew being paged just before 7pm and proceeded directly to the area indicated.

On arrival the crew found the Dublin-based Irish Coast Guard helicopter Rescue 116 already on scene and winching a man from the water.

The casualty was the lowered onto the beach and into the care of an ambulance crew and members of Dublin Fire Brigade who administered first aid before he was transferred to hospital.

Meanwhile, further reports came in that other swimmers had entered the water to assist the casualty and a subsequent emergency call raised concerns that there may still be someone in the water.

Rescue 116, Skerries RNLI and the Skerries Coast Guard unit coordinated to carry out a search of the immediate area covering the water and the shoreline.

The lifeboat investigated a number of objects at the request of Rescue 116, including a lifebuoy which they recovered into the lifeboat.

When Dublin Coast Guard was satisfied that the area had been thoroughly searched and there were no further swimmers in danger, the lifeboat was stood down and returned to station.

Speaking about the callout, press officer Gerry Canning said: “When a person is in trouble in the water, every second counts. Rescue 116 were on scene very quickly and it was an excellent response from all of the emergency services who worked brilliantly together.

“Our thoughts are with the friends and family of the man taken from the water and we hope he makes a full recovery.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

The Irish Coast Guard has been certified as a ‘Great Place to Work’ by a leading employee satisfaction audit firm.

In 2019 the IRCG partnered with the Great Place to Work Institute to develop and implement an engagement programme with staff and volunteers as it undergoes an extensive programme of reform.

An engagement tool called the Trust Index & Culture Assessment (TCA) was made available to all coastguard personnel and was specifically designed to collect their personal perspectives on the organisation and on wider reform activities.

Commenting on the accolade, the Irish Coast Guard’s acting director Eugene Clonan said: “We are delighted to be recipients of this year's ‘Great Place to Work’ award.

“Engaging in the programme has allowed us to hear the perspectives of all our coastguard members and to create a ‘just’ culture that encourages open engagement and supports the Coast Guard’s wider programme of reform.

“We are proud of our teams and their certification as great places to work and will continue to work together to continuously improve our organisation and resolve the many challenges that remain.”

Clonan added: “This process is much more than a simple survey of attitudes of those working in the organisation and our volunteers around the coast.

“It is about building a sense of ownership and trust across the coastguard, where people can feel empowered to develop as individuals, highlight issues of concern without fear and engage in a constructive and solution-oriented way to the challenges that face a strongly community-based organisation.

“We are an organisation that has been through some traumatic events over the last five years and we are keen to learn from these events.

“That is at the heart of this initiative — a clear demonstration that we are willing to learn, develop and improve how we do what we do. The icing is that this work is being recognised by an outside organisation.”

Published in Coastguard
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The Irish Coast Guard has cited safety reasons for its temporary suspension of cliff rescues, as RTÉ News reports.

A spokesperson said the move is in line with its safety management system “and the function will be resumed when it has been is deemed safe to do so”.

Areas affected by the suspension will be serviced by existing coastguard units and the SAR helicopter network, the spokesperson added.

The move comes just weeks after some coastguard cliff rescue team members claimed they had not received any training in six months amid pandemic restrictions, as previously noted on Afloat.ie.

Published in Coastguard

Howth Coast Guard’s cliff rescue team came to the aid of relieved owners after Jacko the dog fell over a cliff on Howth Head yesterday afternoon, Friday 26 February.

It emerged that Jacko had been distracted by wildlife while out for a walk on the cliff path, and had slipped 100 feet down the steep cliff face to the rocks below.

Shortly after 1pm, Howth’s Irish Coast Guard unit dispatched a team of 12 to the scene near Casana Rock, where they set up their ropes and lowered a rescue climber with a dog harness over the cliff edge.

Shortly after, Jacko had been lifted to safety and reunited with his owners, who swiftly brought him to the vet for treatment for injuries he sustained in his fall.

Howth Coast Guard’s cliff rescue team set up for a descent

“We are appreciative that the owners remained on the path and called for help immediately,” Howth Coast Guard said.

The unit added that its members attend over 100 calls a year, and with travel limitations in place this year is expected to be as busy if not busier than previous.

All are encouraged to call for the coastguard at 112 or 999 if they see someone who may be in trouble on the cliffs, beach or water.

Published in Rescue
Tagged under

A woman was rescued from a sea inlet in West Cork after a more than 90-minute ordeal yesterday evening, Thursday 25 February.

The casualty had got caught in the swelling tide just off the slipway at Dunworley Beach near Butlerstown before 5pm.

Fortunately her shouts for help were heard above the sinkhole leading to the inlet a local walker, who immediately called the rescue services.

Courtmacsherry RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat attended the scene alongside the Irish Coast Guard’s helicopter Rescue 115 from Shannon and the land-based Old Head/Seven Heads coastguard unit, who rigged up their ropes to climb down the sinkhole and reach the casualty.

The woman was then successfully raised up the sink hole cliff face to the care of a waiting HSE ambulance crew.

Courtmacsherry RNLI volunteer lifeboat press officer Vincent O'Donovan said: “It was great to see the total dedication of so many voluntary people from all the rescue services today and everyday in these difficult Covid times, who drop all and rush to the aid of others in difficulties.”

O'Donovan reiterated the importance of calling the rescue services at 112 or 999 quickly once any incident like this occurs, as they are always at the ready 24 hours a day — and every minute is so important to any person in difficulty.

Published in Rescue

Irish Coast Guard training needs “will be addressed” after units expressed concerns about their safety with exercises suspended under lockdown, as TheJournal.ie reports.

While limited coastguard training resumed earlier this month, the likes of cliff units have not been able to take part in in-person training since Level 3.

And it’s been claimed that some members of the specialist cliff rescue teams have not received any training in six months.

TheJournal.ie has much more on the story HERE.

Published in Coastguard

A dog and his walker were rescued after they got cut off by the tide at Sandymount this afternoon (Thursday 4 February).

Dun Laoghaire RNLI’s inshore lifeboat assisted with recovering the duo from the water and bringing them to safety at Poolbeg beach.

National Ambulance Service paramedics arrived to give the owner a medical check-up.

At the same time, an Irish Coast Guard member and a paramedic gave Hugo the dog some TLC after his dramatic experience, as Hugo can’t swim.

Dun Laoghaire’s coastguard unit reminds the public if you see anyone in difficulty in or near the water, dial 112/999 immediately and ask for the coastguard.

Published in Rescue

Cork Beo reports that a body was recovered off the West Cork coast in a multi-agency operation for a missing person on Sunday (27 December).

Thermal imaging was used to locate the remains in the area of the Old Head of Kinsale.

The crew of the Irish Coast Guard’s Waterford-based helicopter Rescue 117 were praised on social media for their bravery in recovering the body amid severe winds ahead of Storm Bella.

The incident came within days of the discovery of a body in the water at Dun Laoghaire’s Coal Harbour pier, which is being investigated by gardaí.

Published in Coastguard
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The Round Britain & Ireland Race

The 2022 Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race will feature a wide variety of yachts racing under the IRC rating rule as well as one design and open classes, such as IMOCA, Class40 and Multihulls. The majority of the fleet will race fully crewed, but with the popularity of the Two-Handed class in recent years, the race is expected to have a record entry.

The Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race starts on Sunday 7th August 2022 from Cowes, Isle of Wight, UK.

The 2022 Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race is organised by The Royal Ocean Racing Club in association with The Royal Yacht Squadron.

It is run every four years. There have been nine editions of the Round Britain and Ireland Race which started in 1976 Sevenstar has sponsored the race four times - 2006, 2010, 2014, 2018 and has committed to a longterm partnership with the RORC

The 2022 Sevenstar Round Britain and Ireland Race is a fully crewed non-stop race covering 1,805 nautical miles and is open to IRC, IRC Two Handed, IMOCA 60s, Class40s, Volvo 65s and Multihulls that will race around Britain and Ireland, starting from the Royal Yacht Squadron line in Cowes on the Isle of Wight starting after Cowes Week on Sunday 7 August 2022

The last edition of the race in 2018 attracted 28 teams with crews from 18 nations. Giles Redpath's British Lombard 46 saw over victory and Phil Sharp's Class40 Imerys Clean Energy established a new world record for 40ft and under, completing the course in 8 days 4 hrs 14 mins 49 secs.

The 1,805nm course will take competitors around some of the busiest and most tactically challenging sailing waters in the world. It attracts a diverse range of yachts and crew, most of which are enticed by the challenge it offers as well as the diversity and beauty of the route around Britain and Ireland with spectacular scenery and wildlife.

Most sailors agree that this race is one of the toughest tests as it is nearly as long as an Atlantic crossing, but the changes of direction at headlands will mean constant breaks in the watch system for sail changes and sail trim

Sevenstar Round Britain & Ireland Race Records:

  • Outright - OMA07 Musandam-Oman Sail, MOD 70, Sidney Gavignet, 2014: 3 days 03:32:36
  • Monohull - Azzam Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing, VO 65, Ian Walker, 2014: 4 days 13:10:28
  • Monohull All-Female - Team SCA, VO 65, Samantha Davies, 2014: 4 days 21:00:39
  • Monohull 60ft or less - Artemis Team Endeavour, IMOCA 60, Brian Thompson/Artemis Ocean Racing, 2014: 5 days 14:00:54
  • Monohull 40ft or less – Imerys Clean Energy, Class40, Phil Sharp, 2018: 8 days 4:14:49

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