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Displaying items by tag: Fenit

Marine Minister Charlie McConalogue has continued his series of visits to some of Ireland’s main fishing ports, spending yesterday and today (Thursday 16 and Friday 17 September) in Co Kerry.

The minister met with fishers, fishing organisations and other stakeholders as he visited the ports of Dingle, Fenit and Cromane.

These visits follow on from the minister’s trips during the summer to Howth, Kilmore Quay, Dunmore East, Killybegs, Union Hall and Castletownbere.

In Fenit, the minister met with local fishers to discuss fishing matters. The Marine Institute and local stakeholders updated on conservation initiatives and measures for crayfish along the Co Kerry coastline and outlined protection measures for angel shark, skates and rays, particularly in the Tralee Bay area.

A public consultation on the crayfish fishery was launched last month to gather views on measures targeted at eliminating the by-catch of endangered species while seeking to secure a viable and sustainable future for the fishery. The consultation concluded yesterday.

Later the minister visited Dingle Fishery Harbour Centre and met the harbour master. Since 2010, €17.4 million has been invested in the development and maintenance of Dingle FHC under the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine’s Fishery Harbour and Coastal Infrastructure Capital Programme.

In Dingle, the minister also met with local fishers and representatives of the seafood and broader marine sector including the Dingle Innovation Hub and the Dingle Aquarium.

In Cromane, the minster met with, and heard the views of the local community regarding a landing facility.

Commenting on the visits, Minister McConalogue said: “I have had constructive meetings with fishers, aquaculture farmers and other stakeholders during my visit to Kerry today, and I thank everyone for meeting me to discuss matters important to their communities.

“It is a great opportunity for me to hear directly from marine stakeholders who are central in ensuring the long-term vibrancy of our coastal communities.”

Published in Fishing
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Volunteer lifeboat crew from Fenit RNLI rescued a swimmer last night (Sunday 22 August) following an extensive search after clothes had been found on a beach at Castlegregory earlier in the day. Fenit RNLI and Rescue 115 had been requested to launch by the Irish Coast Guard yesterday morning at 11 am after the discovery of clothes on a beach in Castlegregory. At 8.30 pm volunteer lifeboat crew with Fenit RNLI spotted a head above the water and took the swimmer onboard the All-Weather Lifeboat. It is not known how long the swimmer had been in the water but the casualty was brought to Fenit Harbour to be met by ambulance and brought to hospital.

Early yesterday, Fenit RNLI All-Weather Lifeboat crew were on exercise when they were tasked to a search for swimmer at 12.40 pm, following the discovery of clothes on a beach. Fenit RNLI Inshore lifeboat and Rescue 115 also joined the search. Conditions were excellent with calm waters and low tide and a search was undertaken of the area. With nothing found and no further information, the search was stood down in the afternoon.

At 6 pm the search was reactivated at the request of An Garda Siochana with the two lifeboats searching the original area and the bay nearer to Tralee and again joined by Rescue 115 overhead. At 8.30 pm, volunteer lifeboat crew with Fenit RNLI spotted a pod of dolphins and a head above the water about two and a half miles off Castlegregory beach. The casualty was conscious and immediately recovered onto the lifeboat and brought Fenit Harbour to be taken to hospital. Fenit RNLI’s medical advisor was also on scene.

Commenting on the rescue Fenit RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager Gerard O’Donnell said, ‘ After a long and exhaustive search, members of the lifeboat crew were overjoyed to sight the missing swimmer in the water. They had been scanning the water for any sign of movement and were worried with light fading would not find anyone. Even at this time of year, the water can be very cold and as yet we don’t know how long this person was in the water and when they entered it. When the lifeboat crew found them they were a good distance from the shore and were exhausted.’

‘We would advise that anyone undertaking a swim lets people know where they are going and when they expected back. This was a very lucky individual.’

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Aran Islands RNLI was tasked for a medevac from Inis Mór as a scheduled patient transfer by air was cancelled due to poor visibility yesterday morning, Monday 15 March.

Due to poor visibility, a scheduled patient transfer by air was unable to go ahead. The crew were requested to transfer the patient to Rossaveal.

Following all strict Covid-19 health and safety guidelines, the patient was transferred safely aboard the lifeboat to Rossaveal by both the RNLI crew, under John O'Donnell, and the Inis Mór Fire Service.

Having just launched on the return leg, the lifeboat was called back to Inis Mór as another patient on the island needed further medical attention.

The second patient was safely transferred aboard the lifeboat by the volunteer crew at the pontoon on Inis Mór, and the lifeboat then headed straight for Rossaveal Harbour and the waiting ambulance.

Speaking after the callout, Aran Islands RNLI coxswain John O'Donnell said: “The volunteer crew responded quickly and two patients are safely on their way to further medical attention — we would like to wish them both a speedy recovery.

“Poor visibility can be very dangerous on the water. Should you get into difficulty or see someone else in trouble, call 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard.”

File image of Fenit RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat (Photo: RNLI/Fenit)File image of Fenit RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat | Photo: RNLI/Fenit

Elsewhere, Fenit RNLI’s volunteer crew responded to a report of concern for a windsurfer in the Maharees Islands area early on Sunday evening, 14 March.

The all-weather lifeboat launched with a full crew on board and headed to the location near Castlegregory, on the north side of the Dingle Peninsula.

The Irish Coast Guard’s Shannon-based helicopter Rescue 115 also attended the scene in a search co-ordinated by Valentia Coast Guard.

A search of the given location was under way when word was received that the windsurfer had safely made his way ashore.

Speaking following the callout, Fenit RNLI coxswain Finbarr O’Connell said: “Fenit RNLI are delighted with a safe and positive outcome for all concerned. As always this is an opportunity to remind all users of the sea to be as prepared as possible when going to sea.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

Courtmacsherry RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat was called out yesterday afternoon (Sunday 21 February) to a surfer in difficulty off Garrettstown Beach near the Old Head of Kinsale.

The Trent class lifeboat with a crew of five was under way within minutes of the 3.40pm call.

However, upon reaching the scene less than 15 minutes later, they learned that the surfer had managed to get ashore with the help of family members.

“It was great to see the fast response of so many of our volunteer crew again today, when their bleepers activated, which ensured that we were at the scene very quickly,” said Brian O'Dwyer, Courtmacsherry RNLI volunteer lifeboat operations manager.

Elsewhere, Fenit RNLI’s volunteer crew were tasked around 1pm to reports of two upturned kayaks in the Banna Strand area.

The station launched both its all-weather and inshore lifeboats, with a full crew on both vessels.

File image of Fenit RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat (Photo: RNLI/Fenit)File image of Fenit RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat | Photo: RNLI/Fenit

On arrival at the scene of the reported sighting, the lifeboat crews were advised that the occupants of the kayaks were safe and accounted for, and their kayaks washed ashore shortly afterwards.

Fenit lifeboat press officer Jackie Murphy said the volunteers “were delighted that there was a safe and positive outcome for all concerned”.

Meanwhile, the RNLI stresses to all those taking part in any water activities or planning a visit to the coast during this extended lockdown to follow its water safety advice below, along with all new Government regulations, and stay safe in these different times for all rescue services:

  • Have a plan — check the weather forecast, tide times and read local hazard signage.
  • Keep a close eye on your family — on the beach, on the shoreline and in the water.
  • Don’t allow your family to swim alone.
  • Don’t use inflatables at all, at all on the sea.
  • Make sure to wear a lifejacket at all times when taking to the sea in a boat.
  • If you fall into the water unexpectedly, FLOAT TO LIVE. Fight your instinct to thrash around, lean back, extend your arms and legs, and float.
  • In an emergency dial 999 or 112 immediately and ask for the coastguard. The rescue services are there to help you all.
Published in RNLI Lifeboats

Open-air diving is set to return to Fenit in Co Kerry after a near 20-year gap, as RTÉ News reports.

The move follows a three-year campaign to revive a long history of diving at the harbour town just outside of Tralee.

The tradition ceased in Fenit nearly 20 years ago after a claim against the former Tralee swimming club, and diving at the town remained closed amid health and safety concerns.

But local campaigners recently set up a restoration committee with a focus on the tourism potential of diving boards in the harbour as part of the Wild Atlantic Way.

Following appeal, plans for a 3.5m diving board on the Fenit Bathing Slips have now been given the green light — with fundraising now the only obstacle.

RTÉ News has more on the story HERE.

Published in Diving
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The team at Fenit RNLI in County Kerry is calling for new volunteers to help them to save lives at sea.

The charity is looking for volunteers to take up the Deputy Launching Authority role at the station. This role will authorise the launch of the station’s all-weather and inshore lifeboats, provide leadership in the absence of the Lifeboat Operations Manager and oversee that all operational activities are carried out to ensure the lifeboats and all associated equipment are maintained in readiness for launching on service.

Fenit RNLI is seeking team players with leadership skills and local maritime knowledge. The role is best suited to those who live within good proximity of the lifeboat station.

The call-out follows Fenit's welcome of the first female appointment of a Lifeboat Coxswain in Ireland in September. 

Fenit RNLI which re-opened in 1994, after a gap of 25 years, and today operates both an all-weather Trent class lifeboat and an inshore D class lifeboat, launched its lifeboats 27 times last year bringing 28 people to safety.

Ger O’Donnell, Fenit RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager is now calling on new volunteers to find out more: ‘Volunteering with us gives people the opportunity to make a real difference in their local community, to save lives and become part of the larger RNLI family. We can’t keep people safe without the support of our wonderful volunteers, who truly make a difference every day no matter which role they are fulfilling.

‘Becoming a volunteer Deputy Launching Authority is a great chance to play a crucial part in helping to save lives. We are looking for enthusiastic people who are willing to offer some of their free time to join what I believe to be, one of the most rewarding voluntary services that is out there. Every volunteer receives first-class training from the RNLI and learns new skills which can benefit them in many walks of life. Full training will be supplied to ensure Deputy Launching Authorities can authorise the launch of our lifeboats, provide the necessary leadership for our volunteer crew and ensure that all operational activities are carried out to maintain the lifeboats and equipment for launching on a call out.’

Anyone interested in finding out more or wants to apply is asked to email Rob King, Area Lifesaving Manager at [email protected] or Fenit RNLI at [email protected]

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Denise Lynch, a volunteer lifeboat crewmember with Fenit RNLI in Kerry, has been passed out as an RNLI Coxswain. She is currently the only woman to hold the senior position on an operational lifeboat crew in Ireland and is the first woman to be appointed to the role in the country. Denise began as a volunteer in 2001 and has served on both Fenit RNLI’s inshore and all-weather lifeboats.

Denise became interested in lifeboats as a primary school student when her class visited the lifeboat station on a school trip. From a prominent fishing family in Fenit, as a child, she knew and looked up to the lifeboat Coxswain and decided that when she was old enough she would join the lifeboat crew. The middle of six children, Denise (37) is the only one of her family to serve on the lifeboat.

On her appointment, Denise said, ‘From the day I visited the station in primary school, I fell in love with lifeboats. I know my family and the lifeboat crew are proud of me and I feel incredibly honoured and ready for this new challenge. I have been a Helm on the inshore lifeboat and a navigator on the all-weather lifeboat for years. I think about how we are helping families whose loved ones are in trouble and it hits home how important the work of the RNLI is, along with that of our colleagues in the Coast Guard and other search and rescues agencies.’

While Denise is currently the only female Coxswain volunteering on operational lifeboat crew in Ireland, Helena Duggan, a staff Assessor Trainer with the RNLI, is also a Coxswain. There are currently 155 volunteer female lifeboat crew in Ireland. The charity is looking to recruit more volunteers for a variety of sea-going and station roles and Denise is keen to encourage others to follow in her footsteps.

Asked what advice she would have for other women who might be interested in becoming lifeboat crew, Denise is clear in her answer, ‘I’d say go for it. It’s no big deal to my male colleagues on the lifeboat crew that a woman is in this role, because they know me and they’ve been to sea with me in all weathers. The trust and respect are mutual between lifeboat crew. They know I can do the job and they know I’m there for them, whatever happens. If you’ve an interest, just give it a cut.’

‘The RNLI will provide the training and they’ll know if and when you’re ready to move into a different role. I want to thank everyone at Fenit RNLI for supporting me and the RNLI for giving me the opportunity. It’s very special to the be first but I hope there are many more to come. I hope it encourages more people to volunteer.’

Commenting on the appointment, Fenit RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager Ger O’Donnell said, ‘ We are delighted to have a new Coxswain at Fenit. Denise is a great addition to our Coxswain team and has been a valuable member of the lifeboat crew for many years. We are lucky to have so many great volunteers at our station who fill a variety of roles, from fundraising to operations. We couldn’t function without them and they all play their part to save lives at sea.’

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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It was a most unusual callout for Fenit RNLI yesterday evening (Tuesday 25 August) as they were tasked to a dolphin in the shallows near Fenit Pier in Co Kerry.

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.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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In the latest of a busy week of callouts, Fenit RNLI’s volunteer crew launched last night (Thursday 13 August) to reports of unidentified items near the coast off Ballyheigue Beach.

Both the all-weather and inshore lifeboats launched with full crews at around 10.30pm and conducted a thorough search of the area, soon revealing that the items spotted were the remnants of fishing equipments.

Fenit RNLI said the call was raised with good intention and that such alerts are always the correct course of action should anyone ever have concern in relation to safety at sea.

Last night’s launch was the seventh callout in as many days for the Tralee Bay lifeboat station, with previous incidents including a group of surfers in potential danger, a large vessel which ran a ground, and a number of other boats that needed towing to safety in harbours throughout North and West Kerry.

The lifeboat volunteers also provided a safety escort for a swimming fundraiser last Saturday 8 August.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Fenit RNLI launched in gale force conditions during Storm Lorenzo this evening to search for a windsurfer reported missing off Brandon Bay in County Kerry.

The volunteer lifeboat crew were requested to launch their all-weather lifeboat at 7.23 pm this evening by the Irish Coast Guard.

A fellow windsurfer who was already on the shore raised the alarm after he lost sight of his partner for four minutes.

The lifeboat launched immediately under Coxswain John Moriarty and with six crew members onboard and made its way to the scene some 14 nautical miles from the station in gale force 9 conditions.

The Irish Coast Guard helicopter Rescue 115 from Shannon was also tasked along with Dingle Coast Guard.

The lifeboat was almost on scene when communication came through that the windsurfer had made it to shore by himself and was safe and well. The lifeboat was subsequently stood down.

Speaking following the call out, Ger O’Donnell, Fenit RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager said: ‘Thankfully, we had a good outcome this evening and the windsurfer was located safe and well.

‘As Storm Lorenzo continues, we would remind everybody to take note of the weather forecast and Stay Back – Stay Dry – Stay High. If you see someone in difficulty or are concerned about somebody’s whereabouts on or near the water use VHF channel 16 or dial 112, and ask for the Coast Guard.

‘RNLI lifeboat crews are ever ready to answer any call for help and I would like to commend the 14 crew members who turned up at the lifeboat station this evening willing and selflessly prepared to go out despite the gale force conditions.’

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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The Half Ton Class was created by the Offshore Racing Council for boats within the racing band not exceeding 22'-0". The ORC decided that the rule should "....permit the development of seaworthy offshore racing yachts...The Council will endeavour to protect the majority of the existing IOR fleet from rapid obsolescence caused by ....developments which produce increased performance without corresponding changes in ratings..."

When first introduced the IOR rule was perfectly adequate for rating boats in existence at that time. However yacht designers naturally examined the rule to seize upon any advantage they could find, the most noticeable of which has been a reduction in displacement and a return to fractional rigs.

After 1993, when the IOR Mk.III rule reached it termination due to lack of people building new boats, the rule was replaced by the CHS (Channel) Handicap system which in turn developed into the IRC system now used.

The IRC handicap system operates by a secret formula which tries to develop boats which are 'Cruising type' of relatively heavy boats with good internal accommodation. It tends to penalise boats with excessive stability or excessive sail area.

Competitions

The most significant events for the Half Ton Class has been the annual Half Ton Cup which was sailed under the IOR rules until 1993. More recently this has been replaced with the Half Ton Classics Cup. The venue of the event moved from continent to continent with over-representation on French or British ports. In later years the event is held biennially. Initially, it was proposed to hold events in Ireland, Britain and France by rotation. However, it was the Belgians who took the ball and ran with it. The Class is now managed from Belgium. 

At A Glance – Half Ton Classics Cup Winners

  • 2017 – Kinsale – Swuzzlebubble – Phil Plumtree – Farr 1977
  • 2016 – Falmouth – Swuzzlebubble – Greg Peck – Farr 1977
  • 2015 – Nieuwport – Checkmate XV – David Cullen – Humphreys 1985
  • 2014 – St Quay Portrieux – Swuzzlebubble – Peter Morton – Farr 1977
  • 2013 – Boulogne – Checkmate XV – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1985
  • 2011 – Cowes – Chimp – Michael Kershaw – Berret 1978
  • 2009 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978
  • 2007 – Dun Laoghaire – Henri-Lloyd Harmony – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1980~
  • 2005 – Dinard – Gingko – Patrick Lobrichon – Mauric 1968
  • 2003 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978

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