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The body of an off-duty garda who was swept away by floodwater in Co Wicklow during Monday's torrential rain has been recovered.
The Irish Times reports that 25-year-old Garda Ciaran Jones was pulled into the River Liffey at the Ballysmuttan Bridge around 7pm on Monday while warning motorists not to cross the bridge.
A search and rescue operation was immediately launched involving the Irish Coast Guard, the Garda helicopter and mountain and river rescue teams, according to the Irish Examiner.
His body was eventually found at 9am yesterday morning some 4km downstream.
Supt Eamon Keogh of Blessington Garda Station noted that Garda Jones had been crossing the bridge to warn an oncoming car when he was swept into the swollen river by a sudden surge of water.
Taoiseach Enda Kenny led tributes to the young garda as well as a woman who died at her home in Dublin during the flooding that caused chaos across the east of Ireland on Monday evening, with several inland waterways bursting their banks.

The body of an off-duty garda who was swept away by floodwater in Co Wicklow during Monday's torrential rain has been recovered.

The Irish Times reports that 25-year-old Garda Ciaran Jones was pulled into the River Liffey at the Ballysmuttan Bridge around 7pm on Monday while warning motorists not to cross the bridge.

A search and rescue operation was immediately launched involving the Irish Coast Guard, the Garda helicopter and mountain and river rescue teams, according to the Irish Examiner.

His body was eventually found at 9am yesterday morning some 4km downstream of the incident.

Supt Eamon Keogh of Blessington Garda Station noted that Garda Jones had been crossing the bridge to warn an oncoming car when he was swept into the swollen river by a sudden surge of water.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny led tributes to the young garda as well as a woman who died at her home in Dublin during the flooding that caused chaos across the east of Ireland on Monday evening, with several inland waterways bursting their banks.

Published in News Update
Irish Water Safety has today warned about the increased risk to the public in our current and forecast flood conditions this weekend. Ireland will experience the largest tides this year with Galway being worst hit with a high tide of 5.3 metres and the low water receding to -.1 metre below chart datum, which is unusual. During this coming Saturday & Sunday morning and evening it will become windy with heavy rain and strong south to westerly winds. There will be a full moon tonight which creates these large tidal ranges, in addition there are large areas of low pressure out in the Atlantic which further increase the height of our tides tides especially in our estuaries and bays exposed to the south and west coasts. The periods of rain over the weekend further increase flooding levels.

Flood conditions expose the public to hazards they need to be aware of. Fast moving water can exert pressure of up to four times its speed against the legs of someone attempting to cross it. Because water displaces bodyweight, the deeper a person becomes immersed the less the person weighs so the more difficult it is to remain upright. Never put ones feet down if swept away in floodwater, because foot and body entrapments and pinning are the leading cause of accidental death in rivers and fast flowing water.

Motorists need to be vigilant to avoid flooded areas on roads but particularly near rivers; with poor light and short days it is not possible to determine the depth of floods easily.  Swift water will carry cars and other vehicles away and there have been very tragic drownings in the past as a result.

Children are naturally curious about water, therefore parents should caution them that floodwater hides the true depth and that manhole covers may be open and that small streams when swollen are very fast and deeper than normal.

What should I do when I hear a Flood Warning?
·              Listen to the national and local radio for met eireann updates and AA Road watch updates
·              Check on neighbours particularly if they are elderly, infirmed or families with young children
·              Move your vehicles to higher ground
·              Move animal stock to higher ground
·              Check your small craft to ensure they are well secured or moored
·              Make sure you have warm clothes, food, drink, a torch and radio.
·              Block doorways and airbricks with sandbags or plastic bags filled with earth. Floodgate products will also work effectively.
·              Switch off gas and electricity supplies if flooding is imminent.
·              Check the time of High Water in the Newspaper or on http://easytide.ukho.gov.uk/EASYTIDE/EasyTide/SelectPort.aspx
·              Check out www.flooding.ie for more detail on General flooding

Personal Safety
·              Avoid flood waters at all times
·              carry a mobile phone at all times in case you need to call for help - call 112  in emergency
·              Wear suitable protective clothing & a lifejacket on or around water
·              Do not enter fast flowing water.
·              Never put your feet down if swept away by fast flowing waters
·              Flooding on roads will be deeper at dips and around bridges.
·              Stay away from sea and flood defences.
·              when walking or driving, be aware of manhole covers and gratings that may have been moved due to the heavy flow of water.
·              Take care when using electric appliances in damp or flood conditions.
·              Remember that during the hours of darkness the dangers are multiplied.

After the flood
·              Avoid eating food that has been in contact with flood water.
·              Run water for a few minutes and wash your taps.
·              Check gas and electricity supply.
·              Leave wet electrical equipment alone to dry and have it checked prior to use.
·              Ventilate your property well.
·              Check on elderly neighbors.
Published in Marine Warning

The GP14 is a popular sailing dinghy, with well over 14,000 boats built.

The class is active in the UK, Ireland, Australia, South Africa, Sri Lanka and parts of north-eastern USA, and the GP14 can be used for both racing and cruising. 

Designed by Jack Holt in 1949, with the assistance of the Dovey Yacht Club in Aberdyfi. The idea behind the design was to build a General Purpose (GP) 14-foot dinghy which could be sailed or rowed, capable of also being powered effectively by a small outboard motor, able to be towed behind a small family car and able to be launched and recovered reasonably easily, and stable enough to be able to lie to moorings or anchor when required. Racing soon followed, initially with some degree of opposition from Yachting World, who had commissioned the design, and the boat soon turned out to be an outstanding racing design also.

The boat was initially designed with a main and small jib as a comfortable family dinghy. In a design philosophy that is both practical and highly redolent of social attitudes of the day the intention was that she should accommodate a family comprising parents plus two children, and specifically that the jib should be modest enough for "Mum" or older children to handle, while she should perform well enough to give "Dad" some excitement when not taking the family out. While this rig is still available, and can be useful when using the boat to teach sailing, or for family sailing, and has some popularity for cruising, the boat is more commonly seen with the full modern rig of a mainsail, genoa and spinnaker. Australian boats also routinely use trapezes.

GP14 Ireland Event Dates 2023

  • O'Tiarnaigh (Apr 22-23) Blessington Sailing Club
  • Ulsters (May 20-21) East Antrim Boat Club
  • Munsters (Jun 17-18) Tralee Bay Sailing Club
  • Leinsters (Jul 7-9) Dun Laoghaire Regatta
  • SOYC (Aug 19-20) Rush Sailing Club
  • Nationals (Sep 1-3) Sutton Dinghy Club
  • Hot Toddy (Sep 30-Oct 1) Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club

 

At A Glance – GP14 Dinghy Specifications

Crew 2
Draft 1,200 mm (47 in)
Hull weight 132.9 kg
LOA 4.27 m (14 ft)
Beam 1.54 m
Spinnaker area 8.4 m2
Upwind sail area 12.85 m2

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