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Displaying items by tag: Helvick Head

October's Helvick Head & Dungarvan RNLI Dinner Dance celebrates 25 years of station reopening on the Waterford coast.

The event takes place on October 22nd at the Park Hotel in Dungarvan. 

Tickets are €50 each, including a four-course meal and live music by Deuces Wild. 

It's been a busy season for the Helvick Head RNLI who were called upon twice on the same weekend as it celebrated the 25th anniversary of its reopening in August.

 

 

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Helvick Head RNLI was requested to launch their inshore lifeboat on Tuesday afternoon, 20 September, following a report that a swimmer was in difficulty off Clonea beach.

With calm seas and Force 2-3 south westerly winds, the volunteer crew launched the ‘Robert Armstrong’ lifeboat at 5.35 pm following a request by the Irish Coast Guard. It followed a report from a member of the public that a swimmer was in difficulty near Ballinclamper, the southern end of Clonea beach.

The lifeboat, helmed by Alan Kelly and with crew members Joe Foley and Simon O’Hara onboard, made its way to the reported location arriving on scene at 5.40 pm. However, the lifeboat was stood down as it transpired the male swimmer was snorkelling in the area and did not require any assistance. 

Speaking following the call out, John Condon, Helvick Head RNLI Deputy Launching Authority, said: ‘This call out turned out to be a false alarm with good intent, but we would commend the person who raised the alarm, reporting what they perceived as someone in difficulty. It is always better to be safe than sorry, safety is always our priority.’

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Helvick Head RNLI in Co Waterford was called upon twice on the same weekend as it celebrated the 25th anniversary of its reopening.

The first callout was during a bright and sunny Saturday afternoon (20 August), when lifeboat volunteers were paged at 4.30pm to give onshore assistance to a beachgoer with a leg injury at Helvick Head cove.

The female tourist had sustained a dislocated knee while sitting on the rocks and was supported by a number of crew members until an ambulance arrived.

She was treated on scene by paramedics before being transferred to hospital and later released to recover at home.

A family member visited the station the following day to thank all involved as it materialised that this was not the first time the casualty had encountered the lifeboat services.

Over 20 years ago, she had been one of a number of children cut off by the tide at Faill an Staicin beach and subsequently rescued by the lifeboat crew.

The following day (Sunday 21 August), Helvick Head RNLI were celebrating the 25th anniversary of the reopening of the station with an open day to recognise its relationships with other local emergency services.

While conducting an exercise in front of local crowds, alongside the crews of Naval Service vessel LÉ George Bernard Shaw, the Irish Coast Guard’s Waterford-based helicopter Rescue 117 and Youghal RNLI, the volunteer lifeboat was redirected at 3.52pm at the request of the coastguard.

It followed a report that an 18-foot pleasure boat had broken down in Dungarvan Bay.

The lifeboat — helmed by Richard Haines and with crew members Alan Kelly, Pat Devereux and Rian Kelly onboard — made its way to the reported location through choppy waters and Force 3-4 northwesterly winds.

Once on scene, the crew assessed the situation and found the three male casualties to be safe and well. As the boat had sustained engine failure, a decision was made to tow it back to Helvick Head pier.

Speaking following the callout, John Condon, Helvick Head RNLI deputy launching authority said: “The casualties did the right thing by calling for help when they realised they were in difficulty.

“We would remind anyone planning a trip to sea to always go prepared. Wear a lifejacket and be sure to carry a means of communication. Should you get into trouble or see someone else in difficulty, dial 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard.”

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Helvick Head RNLI went to assist two children today (Tuesday 19 July) at Clonea Beach after they were swept out to sea on an inflatable.

With Force 2-3 north westerly winds and calm seas, the volunteer crew launched their inshore lifeboat at the request of the Irish Coast Guard at 12.17pm 

The lifeboat helmed by Alan Kelly and with crew members Paidi Breathnach, Cathal Reilly and Pat Devereaux onboard, launched at 12.25pm and headed north of the An Rinn peninsula.

On arrival at the scene, the two casualties had been rescued by the Clonea Beach lifeguard team so the lifeboat crew stood by and monitored the situation until everyone was safely back on shore.

Speaking following the call out, Sean Walsh, Helvick Head RNLI Deputy Launching Authority said: ‘Thankfully all’s well that ends well and we would like to wish the children well and commend the Clonea Beach lifeguard team for their efforts in bringing them to safety.

‘While inflatables can be great fun, we would advise that you don’t take them to the beach as they are not designed for open water and it can take very little breeze for them to be swept out to sea - much quicker than you can swim or paddle back to the shore. Should you get into trouble or see someone else in difficulty, dial 999 or 112 and ask for the Coast Guard.

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Courtmacsherry RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat Frederick Storey Cockburn was called out at 10.15pm on Wednesday night (4 May) to join a search off Garrettstown and Garrylucas beaches near the Old Head of Kinsale in West Cork.

Members of the public noticed a person swimming alone offshore, and an item of clothing was located at the beach some time later.

The lifeboat, with a crew of five under coxswain Mark Gannon, was underway within minutes and proceeded in the dark of night to the area of the search.

The lifeboat reached the area within 15 minutes and commenced a detailed search of the waters and coastline alongside the Kinsale RNLI inshore lifeboat and the Old Head/Seven Heads Coast Guard unit. The search was joined later by the Irish Coast Guard’s Waterford-based helicopter Rescue 117.

A thorough search was undertaken using the powerful search lights, night vision and parachute flares from the lifeboat and the heat detection sensors of the helicopter, while the coastguard unit on the water combed the shoreline at Garrettstown and Garrylucas.

At 12.30am, when nothing was located and gardaí had carried out detailed enquiries ashore, the Valentia Coast Guard Marine Co-Ordination Centre called off the search and the lifeboat and the other rescue services returned to their bases.

Brian O’Dwyer, Courtmacsherry RNLI’s lifeboat operations manager said: “It was great to see the fast response of so many of our voluntary crew tonight when their bleepers activated which ensured that we were at the scene very quickly.

“It is so important to call the rescue services at 112 or 999 quickly once any incident like this occurs as the various rescue services are always at the ready 24 hours a day and great credit is due to the concerned people that raised the alarm last night.”

The Courtmacsherry volunteer lifeboat crew involved in this call out were Coxswain Mark Gannon, duty mechanic Dave Philips and crew members Ken Cashman, Peter Nunan, Denis Murphy, Evin O’Sullivan and Dean Hennessey.

Helvick Head RNLI's Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat | Credit: RNLI/Aoife DuffyHelvick Head RNLI's Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat | Credit: RNLI/Aoife Duffy

Elsewhere on the same night, Helvick Head RNLI in neighbouring Co Waterford was requested to launch its inshore lifeboat following a report that a swimmer was in difficulty in Dungarvan Harbour.

With calm waters and little to no wind, the volunteer crew launched following the request by the Irish Coast Guard at 9.02pm. It followed a report that a swimmer was in difficulty between the Lookout in Dungarvan Harbour and Cunnigar Point.

The lifeboat, helmed by Alan Kelly and with crew members Joe Foley, Shane Walsh and Paidi Breathnach onboard, made its way to the scene. However, the lifeboat was shortly stood down as it transpired the swimmer wasn’t in difficulty and had reached the shore successfully.

Speaking later, Helvick Head RNLI deputy launching authority Sean Walsh said: “This callout turned out to be a false alarm with good intent but we would commend the person who raised the alarm as we would always much rather launch and find that all is safe and well, than not launch at all.

“On the first official week of summer, we would like to remind people if they are planning on going in the water that Dungarvan Harbour is renowned for its rip currents and can catch even the most experienced swimmers out. If you’re caught in a rip, stay calm, don’t panic. Don’t swim against it but rather parallel to the shore until free of the rip and then make for shore.

“We would also like to remind visitors and people new to our shores that the RNLI has a range of translated safety messages and advice in many languages which are available to download.

“If you do get into difficulty or see somebody in trouble on the water or along the coast, dial 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

Helvick Head RNLI came to the aid of a fisherman on Saturday afternoon last (2 October) after his 21ft open deck boat broke down at Mine Head.

The volunteer crew were requested to launch their inshore lifeboat by the Irish Coast Guard at 2.26pm following a report that the vessel had suffered intermittent engine failure at Mine Head, off the Old Parish coastline in the Deise Gaeltacht region.

The lifeboat helmed by Alan Kelly and with crew members Paudie Walsh, Shane Walsh and Simon O’Hare onboard, launched immediately and made its way to the scene.

There was a Force 5-6 west to north-west wind blowing at the time.

Arriving on scene at 2.46pm, the lifeboat crew assessed the situation before deciding to tow the vessel back to the nearest safe port at Helvick Head Pier where they arrived at 3.20pm.

Speaking following the call out, Helvick Head RNLI Helm Alan Kelly said: ‘The casualty did the right thing by calling for help when he realised he was in difficulty. The winds were too fresh for him to return to the harbour without assistance.

‘We would remind anyone planning a trip to sea to always go prepared. Always wear a lifejacket and always carry a means of communication. Should you get into trouble or see someone else in difficulty, dial 999 or 112 and ask for the Coast Guard.’

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Helvick Head RNLI came to the aid of four people on Monday evening (6 September) after their 14ft open pleasure boat broke down at Cunnigar Point.

The volunteer crew were requested to launch their inshore lifeboat at 7.19 pm following a request from the Irish Coast Guard to assess the situation where the boat with two men and two women onboard, had suffered engine failure at Cunnigar Point, a 5km sand spit that juts across from An Rinn to Dungarvan Bay.

The lifeboat helmed by Alan Kelly and with crew members, Paudie Walsh, Richard Haynes and Joe Foley onboard, launched immediately and made its way to the scene.

Weather conditions at the time were bright and sunny with a flat calm sea and an easterly Force 1 wind.

On arrival, the lifeboat crew first ensured that all onboard were safe and well before assessing the situation and deciding to tow the vessel to the nearest safe port at Ballynagaul.

Speaking following the call out, Sean Walsh, Helvick Head RNLI Deputy Launching Authority said: ‘We would like to commend the group who had taken the necessary safety precautions for their trip. They were all wearing their lifejackets and were at anchor when the lifeboat arrived.’

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Volunteer lifeboat crew from Helvick Head RNLI in Waterford, rescued three kayakers stranded on rocks at Kilmurrin Cove yesterday afternoon (Wednesday 28 July) when a sudden squall capsized one of the kayaks and the group were forced onto the rocks as conditions rapidly deteriorated. The three kayakers were brought to safety when the lifeboat crew carried out a challenging manoeuvre to bring the lifeboat close to the rocks in the choppy waters and the group were helped onto the lifeboat by lifeboat crew and the winchman from Rescue 117.

The alarm was raised at 12.18 pm and Helvick RNLI were joined on the scene by Rescue 117, Bunmahon Coast Guard and Bunmahon Community Rescue Boat. The kayakers got into difficulty when conditions turned from mild to challenging quite quickly. Squalls and horizontal rain saw one kayaker capsize and the group were pushed over to rocks at Kilmurrin Cove. Taking refuge on the sharp rocks in the worsening conditions, a rescue operation was immediately launched. The winchman from Rescue 117 was able to descend from the helicopter onto the rocks and stay with the group as the lifeboat crew made the difficult approach to the rocks.

With no shoreline or safe landing spot, the lifeboat Helm performed a veering down manoeuvre which brought the lifeboat close to the rocks. A lifeboat crewmember swam to the rocks to assist the Rescue 117 winchman with the transfer of the casualties onto the lifeboat. In a highly precise and closely timed exercise, which relied on the crew taking note of the movement of the lifeboat into and away from the rocks, the three casualties were helped onboard the lifeboat and brought to the safety of the shore, where they were met by members of Bunmahon Coast Guard.

Commenting on the callout Helvick Head RNLI crewmember Joe Foley said, ‘“This was a great outcome in some challenging conditions. The wind picked up very quickly out there and the group were right to seek safety on the rocks. We were glad to see that they were all wearing buoyancy aids and had not sustained any injuries other than some scratches. The veering down manoeuvre which we carried out is something that we practice regularly in training, but every scenario is different, and it is challenging when dealing with multiple casualties and a moving lifeboat in choppy water. We have a great group of search and rescue agencies around here and we all work well together.”

The RNLI advises to always wear the proper safety equipment for your activity and always bring a means of calling for help.

This is the fourth callout for Helvick RNLI in the last ten days.

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21st August 2020

RNLI Helvick Swim Cancelled

The 2020 RNLI Helvick Sponsored Swim in County Waterford which was scheduled for Sunday, September 13, has been cancelled due to the revised Covid-19 restrictions.

It would have been the 26th year of the event which was a major fundraiser for the RNLI and social occasion in Waterford.

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#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.”

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