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Displaying items by tag: Helvick Head

#RNLI - Helvick Head RNLI had its first callout for 2018 in the early hours of Saturday morning (20 January) when the crew of a fishing vessel reported engine difficulty.

Pagers sounded at 1.50am and volunteer crew Brian O’Rourke, Joe Foley, Shane Walsh and Cathal Reilly launched the inshore lifeboat Robert Armstrong within minutes.

The lifeboat travelled the eight miles to the vessel and a tow was quickly set up. Sea conditions were described as moderate at the time.

The vessel was then towed back to Helvick Harbour, docking safely at just after 5am.

Commenting on the rescue, Helvick Head RNLI lifeboat operations manager John Condon said: “It was great to see the excellent reaction to the call by all the members of the crew.

“Given the time at which the pagers went off, it was fantastic to see the response by all – not only those who went to sea but also by the others who assisted on the shore.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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#RNLI - Helvick Head RNLI rescued a man who got into difficulty in the water at Helvick Pier early this morning (Sunday 11 September).

The volunteer lifeboat crew was requested to launch their inshore lifeboat at 7.12am following a report of a potential tragedy at Helvick Pier on the Co Waterford headland.

On arriving at the car park, the crew observed a crashed car. The lifeboat took to the water immediately and within seconds shore helpers spotted a casualty in the water.

Once on scene with the casualty, crew members Shane Breathnach and Dónal Ó Faoláin entered the water to assist.

The casualty, who was struggling to stay afloat, was helped into the lifeboat where he was treated for hyperthermia by helm Shay Young and crew member Cathal Reilly.

The man was then returned to Helvick Lifeboat Station where he was cared for until the ambulance arrived and he was transferred to hospital.

"It was a close call this morning and we would like to commend local fishermen Barty Whelan and Richard Tobin who were active on the shore in raising the alarm, spotting the casualty and remaining on site," said Young following the callout.

"Once on scene, it took all four of us aboard the lifeboat to bring the man in and do what was necessary. We would like to wish the casualty a full recovery following his ordeal."

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

#RNLI - Three kayakers who got into difficulty in Dungarvan Bay on Sunday evening (7 August) were assisted by the volunteer crew of Helvick Head RNLI.

The inshore lifeboat Robert Armstrong launched just after 6.30pm following a report that three people in kayaks were struggling in strong winds and currents in the Ballyvoile area of Dungarvan Bay.

One kayaker had made his way ashore but was stuck on rocks and was in need of medical assistance. He was airlifted by the Irish Coast Guard helicopter to Waterford Regional Hospital.

A second woman was helped from her kayak by the lifeboat crew and brought ashore at Clonea Beach close by. The third person was successful in reaching the shore.

The lifeboat, helmed by John Condon and with crew members Shane Walsh and Joe Foley onboard, later returned to the scene to recover a kayak from the rocks.

"Strong winds and the tide made it difficult for the casualties to get ashore and they were struggling," said Condon after the callout, "so the lifeboat was essential in ensuring the safe recovery of the second kayaker as well as in assisting the helicopter. We would like to wish all three kayakers well after their ordeal."

The incident came on the same day that a group of 12 kayakers was rescued in Dublin Bay after failing to heed the small craft warning in place due to forecast high winds, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

#Diving - A man has died after getting into difficulty while diving off Ardmore in Co Waterford yesterday afternoon (Sunday 12 June).

Youghal RNLI's volunteer lifeboat crew were tasked to the incident between Goat Island and Ram Head near Ardmore, Co Waterford before 4.30pm.

On arrival they found a man in the water who they recovered onto the lifeboat, and immediately administered casualty care.

Working with Helvick Head RNLI, who were also on scene, the casualty was winched onto the Irish Coast Guard helicopter Rescue 117 and brought to Waterford University Hospital, where he was later pronounced dead, as the Irish Examiner reports.

A spokesperson for Helvick Head RNLI that a second diver who had been with the deceased had managed to swim to shore to raise the alarm, allowing for a swift emergency response.

Commenting on the callout, Youghal RNLI lifeboat operations manager Fergus Hopkins said: "This was a difficult callout for everyone concerned and our thoughts are with the family of the man who was taken from the water this afternoon."

Published in Diving

#RNLI - The Duck Race in aid of the Helvick Head RNLI lifeboat station on Saturday 11 April 11th was a "spectacular success", according to race co-ordinator RoseAnn Foley.

As part of the Cois Cé celebrations during West Waterford Festival of Food, the 600 little yellow ducks entered the water from Devonshire Bridge in Dungarvan at 1.15pm with a lively commentary from Jenny Beresford and Sean Breathnach as they floated down Davitt’s Quay.

First prize in the Duck Race went to RNLI crew Liam Harty. Second was a photo finish between Séamus Kiersey from Ardmore and Tomás de Faoite ón Rinn, while third went to Tom Considine from Dungarvan and fourth went to Catherine Downey also from An Rinn.

Later, all the ducks were collected from the mud and were washed and put into storage until their next race.

And they weren't the only attraction on the day, with a free lifejacket clinic and sea safety check conducted by Austin Flynn also proving popular.

"We are very grateful to the public, Dungarvan Harbour Sailing Club, the kayakers, SGC and all our sponsors, West Waterford Festival of Food and the media for their enormous support," said Foley.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

#RNLI - The naming ceremony and service of dedication of Helvick Head RNLI’s new Atlantic 85 lifeboat Robert Armstrong will take place at the lifeboat station on Helvick Pier on the south side of Dungarvan Bay at 11am on Saturday 30 August.

The new lifeboat was funded through a legacy from the late Robert Armstrong and will be named in his memory. Robert passed away on 9 November 2009 and the lifeboat will be named by his niece Judi Fleming during the ceremony.

Robert Armstrong was born in 1936 and loved sailing, fishing and boats. He crewed in the English Channel and the North Sea. Bob’s main home was Blackheath but he was most relaxed at his holiday home in Potter Heigham on the Norfolk Broads, where he moored his own boat.

Commenting ahead of the ceremony, his niece Judi said: "Robert’s aunt Alice and her brother Charles were the donors of Alice and Charles, Helvick Head RNLI’s previous lifeboat. Robert attended the ceremony back in 2000 and he was given an RNLI jacket which he wore proudly.

"It is great that something is left in his name of such importance as a lifeboat; saving people’s lives. We as a family are very proud of Bob and what he has done. He would have been 78 on 31 August."

Several members of the Armstrong family will travel from the UK to attend the naming ceremony and service of dedication.

The new lifeboat is an Atlantic 85, built at a cost of €255,000, and has a number of improvements from the Atlantic 75, Helvick Head’s former lifeboat, including a faster top speed of 35 knots, radar, provision for a fourth crewmember and more space for survivors.

It can operate safely in daylight in up to Force 7 conditions and at night up to Force 6. It also allows lifeboat crews to respond even faster in emergencies.

Helvick Head RNLI fundraising chairman Oliver Clancy will MC the ceremony and Chaplin Fr Conor Kelly and the Very Rev Dean Draper will lead the service of dedication.

Lifeboat operations manager Ian Walsh will accept the lifeboat on behalf of Helvick Head lifeboat station.

Local dignitaries, guests and RNLI volunteers from other lifeboat stations on the coast and the general public will also be in attendance. Cór Fear na nDéise, the local men’s choir and Pax, Cárthach and Macdara Ó Faoláin will perform at the event in addition to Dónal Clancy, who will sing the RNLI anthem 'Home from The Sea', which was sung by his dad the late Liam Clancy as the Alice & Charles was launched in 2000.

All are welcome to attend this event, but are asked to park their cars on the main road, as access to Helvick Pier from the Erin’s Hope monument will be controlled in the interest of public safety. There will be extra parking in Murray’s field near the pub on the main road in Helvick.

Following the ceremony and with conditions permitting, the Robert Armstrong lifeboat will be launched.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

#MCIB - The Marine Casualty Investigation Board (MCIB) has called for better safety awareness among leisure boat users in its report into the deaths of two men off Helvick Head in Co Waterford in May 2010.

John O'Brien and Pat Esmonde were lost overboard from their small RIB on 23 May 2010, and their remains were recovered two days later. Post-mortems confirmed that both died by drowning.

The report does not conclude exactly how the incident occurred. But accounts from eyewitnesses who sighted the men in the minutes before state that neither was wearing a lifejacket, despite the legal requirement to do so - and despite O'Brien having no seafaring experience and Esmonde being unable to swim, as confirmed by their families.

The MCIB also noted that while there were two lifejackets aboard the vessel, they were for emergencies and not suitable for constant wear as per the requirements for the vessel class.

Other safety issues highlighted include the kill-cord on the engine, which was not being used, and the fact that the initial distress call was made by mobile phone and not VHF radio.

Though neither had any bearing on this specific incident, the MCIB warned in particular that mobile phone calls are closed in nature, whereas VHF distress calls can be heard and answered by any vessel in the vicinity.

The board recommends that the Minister for Transport "undertakes a highly visible information poster campaign on piers and launching areas relating to lifejackets, VHF radio and emergency contact details" and also reminds boaters of their legal obligations.

The full report is available to download as a PDF from the MCIB website HERE.

Published in MCIB

#NEWS UPDATE - RTÉ News reports that a body found in Glandore Harbour today is that of Tit Bonhomme skipper Michael Hayes.

The body of the 52-year-old from Helvick Head in Co Waterford, who went missing more than three weeks ago, was discovered floating close to the mouth of the harbour around lunchtime by his brother, Garda Chief Spt Tom Hayes, according to The Irish Times.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the search operation in Glandore is being wound down this week after the remains of three of the five missing crew were recovered. Egyptian crewman Said Mohammed (23) - also known as Saied Ali Eldin - is still missing.

The fishing vessel Tit Bonhomme ran aground and went down in rough seas near Adam's Rock, at the mouth of Glandore Harbour, on Sunday 15 January.

Only one crewmember, 43-year-old Abdul Mohammed, is confirmed alive after he was able to reach the shore.

Published in News Update
FOUR Irish fishermen reported missing on Sunday have been found in good spirits off the coast of Minehead in Somerset.
This Is The West Country reports that the four men had left Helvick harbour in Co Waterford early on Sunday on a fishing trip but got lost shortly after.
www.thisisthewestcountry.co.uk/news/somerset_news/9284434.Missing_Irish_fishermen_found_off_Minehead/
After contacting the coastguard with their concerns, the Helvick Head RNLI lifeboat was dispatched to Minehead, where the lost boat had been found by another fishing vessel, Faoilean Ban.
The lost fishermen subseqently followed the Faoilean Ban back to port at Helvick.

FOUR Irish fishermen reported missing on Sunday have been found in good spirits off the coast of Minehead in Somerset.

This Is The West Country reports that the four men had left Helvick harbour in Co Waterford early on Sunday on a fishing trip but got lost shortly thereafter.

After contacting the coastguard with their concerns, the Helvick Head RNLI lifeboat was dispatched to Minehead, where the lost boat had been found by another fishing vessel, Faoilean Ban.

The lost fishermen subseqently followed the Faoilean Ban back to port at Helvick.

Published in Rescue

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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