Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

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Displaying items by tag: RNLI

Skerries RNLI were tasked shortly before 11am yesterday morning (Monday 25 April) following a 999 call to Dublin Coast Guard from two kayakers who were stranded on Shenick Island off the North Co Dublin town.

The Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat Louis Simson was quickly launched and the volunteer crew navigated their way around the headland and past Colt and St Patrick’s islands before heading towards Shenick.

After its crew quickly spotted the two men on the foreshore of Shenick island, the lifeboat was carefully manoeuvred into the shallow waters on the western side of the island and two volunteers waded ashore to check on the condition of the casualties.

One of the men had been in the water for some time after his kayak capsized and he lost his paddle. As a result, he was suffering badly from the cold and was beginning to show signs of hypothermia.

The lifeboat helm decided that the best course of action was to get the man ashore and out of the elements as quickly as possible.

He was transferred into the lifeboat by the crew and in order to speed up the evacuation, one member of the crew stayed on the island with the second man, who was feeling fit and well, to assist him in recovering their kayaks from the far side of the island.

The lifeboat brought the casualty to the beach at the lifeboat station, where he was met by shore-crew volunteers who provided him with blankets and brought him into the boathouse.

In the meantime, the lifeboat returned to Shenick Island to pick up the remaining volunteer and the second man. Their kayaks and equipment were also loaded on to the lifeboat and returned to shore.

After spending some time in the station warming up, the man was soon feeling much better and did not require any further medical assistance.

An Irish Defence Forces RIB was also in the area at the time as the Air Corps are currently undergoing exercises in Gormanston. They also made their way to Shenick Island and stood by to offer any assistance if required.

Weather conditions at the time had a Force 3-4 easterly wind with a slight swell and good visibility.

Speaking about the callout, volunteer press officer Gerry Canning said: “The men made the right call in getting themselves ashore wherever they could and calling for help.

“One of the men had his mobile phone in a waterproof case which proved very important in this instance and we continue to encourage people to always carry a means of contacting the shore in case they need assistance.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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The King Sitric Seafood Bar raised €35,634 over the past four years for the RNLI as part of the charity’s Fish Supper campaign.

Head of Engagement for the RNLI, Pete Emmett visited Howth to present a plaque and a letter of thanks signed by Mark Dowie, the Chief Executive of the RNLI to the owners of the King Sitric in recognition of their outstanding contribution to the fundraising efforts of the RNLI.

Speaking following the presentation, Pete Emmett said: “I am delighted to be in Howth to visit The King Sitric alongside my colleague Danny Curran and the local fundraising branch of Howth RNLI. It is important to be here today to make this presentation to Joan, Aidan and Dec and thank them personally for the amazing contribution they have made to the RNLI.

The funds raised by supporters like The King Sitric equip our lifeboats with the best kit and train our crews to the highest standards so that they can save lives at sea.”

Joan Mac Manus of The King Sitric said: “The RNLI is such an important part of the community here in Howth and provides an invaluable service to all who take to the sea whether it’s our suppliers catching us the freshest fish, or our customers who enjoy a sail or a swim nearby.

We are delighted to be able to support the Howth RNLI fundraising branch and host such fantastic Lifeboat Dinners at the restaurant. Over fine food, wine and a lively auction, we’ve managed to raise over €35,000 in the past four years. The dinners have been great fun and we look forward to hosting more in the future!”

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To help launch this year’s Mayday Mile fundraiser for the RNLI, a lone kayaker who got into difficulty off Clogherhead in County Louth last month, returned to visit the lifeboat crew who saved his life when he capsized in a strong current and could not get to safety. Kayaker Andrzej Kolobius met with his rescuers at Clogherhead RNLI lifeboat station to say thank you in person and introduce the volunteer crew to his wife Aneta and daughter Nicola.

Last year, lifeboat crews in Ireland launched 1,078 times, bringing 1,485 people to safety, an increase of 30% on the previous year’s lifeboat callouts. With demand for its lifesaving services at a high, the charity is putting out its own ‘Mayday’ call, urging the public to take part in the RNLI’s Mayday Mile, to raise essential funds to provide vital training and equipment to keep their lifesavers safe, while they save others.

Whether you choose to walk, jog, hop or skip, the Mayday Mile challenges people to cover a distance in any way they like between Saturday 1st and Monday 31st May, whilst raising vital funds for RNLI lifesavers so that they can continue to keep people safe at sea.

Experienced kayaker Andrzej Kolobius, a Polish national living in County Monaghan for many years, wanted to come and visit his rescuers with his family, wife Aneta and daughter Nicola (8), to thank them in person after they saved his life last month. An experienced kayaker, Andrzej had no idea when he took to the water that morning that he would need to be rescued. He still has no idea who raised the alarm but is grateful they did and that he was able to be reunited with his family.

Commenting after meeting his rescuers Andrzej said, ‘I can never express how thankful I am to the lifeboat crew that rescued me. Not just for me but for my wife and daughter too. I am that person who never thought they would need to be rescued. I am an experienced kayaker and had my drysuit and lifejacket on, but I had no idea that I would not be able to get back on my kayak. I was close to the headland, but I was getting battered and was exhausted and could only manage to hang on to the kayak and hope help would come. I can never thank my rescuers enough and I’m delighted to be able to help the RNLI launch their Mayday Mile appeal.’

Clogherhead RNLI mechanic and crewmember Barry Sharkey added, ‘This summer we will no doubt see people get into danger on the water while enjoying a day out with their family or friends. Despite what you may think, it’s so easy to get into trouble. It can happen to anyone, as Andrzej has shown. That’s why we’re calling on our supporters to sign up for their own Mayday Mile, to help give us and our fellow lifesavers everything we need to continue to keep people safe this summer and beyond.’

‘Andrzej had all the correct equipment which helped keep him afloat and warm until we arrived. The fast response from the time the Coast Guard raised the alarm to us rescuing him, made the difference. Seeing him with Aneta and Nicola at the station, brings it home to us that behind every rescue is a family. We are so grateful for the support we receive.’

All funds raised through the Mayday Mile will give RNLI lifesavers the training, equipment, and kit that they need to rescue others and come home safe themselves.

The Mayday Mile will be running from Saturday 1 May to Monday 31 May. Sign up and find out more at

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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From Good Friday (15 April) until the weekend just passed the volunteer crew at Lough Ree RNLI came to the assistance of 17 people who encountered difficulties on and around the lake.

Four of the call-outs were to cruisers which had run aground on shoals and rocks in lower Lough Ree.

On the afternoon of Good Friday, the RNLI lifeboat was tasked to the assistance of a cruiser with five people on board which had run aground at the Hexagon Shoal near Hare Island. On Easter Monday (18 April) just after midday the Irish Coast Guard requested the charity’s volunteer crew to assist a 40ft cruiser with five people on board who had run aground in the same area. Easter Tuesday evening (19 April) just before 9 pm saw the RNLI lifeboat ‘Tara Scougall’ and her crew back north of Hare Island to rescue two people on board a stranded 30ft cruiser.

After inspection, all three vessels were towed to safety at Coosan Point.

On Saturday last (23 April) at 11.35 am under helm Liam Sheringham the Lough Ree RNLI volunteer crew were called to assist a cruiser with four people on board who had run aground north of Yew Point. When the lifeboat reached the scene at Hodson Bay one crew member was put on board the stricken vessel to conduct an examination. Following inspection, the vessel was taken under tow to Coosan Point.

As the Lough Ree RNLI shore crew were on their way to assist the recovered vessel moor at Coosan jetty they were called to assist a member of the public who had taken a fall in the Coosan Point amenity area. The casualty recovered following first aid treatment by the volunteer shore crew at the scene and follow-up care at the lifeboat station.

In recent days the Lough Ree RNLI lifeboat crew has been engaged in recovery and towing training, the charity’s volunteer Operations Manager said: ‘While Lough Ree RNLI is always trained, prepared and ready to respond to any emergency at any time I would encourage those using cruisers on the lake to adhere to all navigation guidelines and be aware of hazards that may lie just beneath to surface of the water.’

Ahead of the May Bank Holiday weekend all who use the lake are encouraged to be mindful of taking all the relevant safety precautions.

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The volunteer Union Hall RNLI crew in West Cork were requested to launch their inshore Atlantic 85 lifeboat Christine and Raymond Fielding, by the Irish Coast Guard at 7.56 pm on Sunday 24th April to a 33-foot vessel with two persons on board with engine difficulty.

The lifeboat under helm Chris Collins with crew Paddy Moloney, Sean Walsh and Riona Casey, launched at 8.04 pm, in South East force 4/5 moderate to rough sea conditions at the time, Once on scene, an assessment was carried out by our crew and due to the engine difficulties, a tow was established and the vessel was escorted to the nearest safe port of Union Hall, where the lifeboat was recovered at 11.00 pm.

Following the call out, Peter Deasy, Union Hall RNLI Deputy Launch Authority said: ‘It is always advisable to call the Coast Guard on 112/999 if you see someone in trouble on or near the water, wear a life jacket, carry a means of communication, wear suitable clothing for the trip at sea, and enjoy your time on the coast over the coming months.’ Also we would like to congratulate Riona on her first call-out as a volunteer crew member here in Union Hall.

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Tramore RNLI were on a training exercise on Saturday afternoon (23 April) when they were tasked by MRCC and redirected to assist a group of kayakers in difficulty.

Upon arrival at the scene minutes later, the crew learned that the men involved were a party of five who were attempting to return to Newtown Cove having paddled out to Great Newtown Head. When they realised the conditions were far from favourable they turned and tried to battle against strong wind and considerable chop.

A number of the group capsized and this accelerated the onset of hypothermia.

Three men were recovered into the lifeboat and brought directly to the RNLI boathouse at the Pier for medical attention. The remaining two of the party made it safely to Newtown Cove where they were assisted by Tramore Coastguard Unit.

On return to the safety of the boathouse, two of the men were treated for mild hypothermia while another was treated by paramedics and transferred to University Hospital Waterford for further assessment and treatment.

Strong offshore winds contributed to the difficulty encountered by the group.

Tramore Sea Rescue Association (CRBI) lifeboat also launched to assist in the rescue and recovered the kayaks that had been abandoned.

The speed of the response and the positive outcome was helped by the prompt reaction of a member of the public who was concerned about the group's lack of progress in the conditions.

This was a great interagency response example from Tramore Lifeboat RNLI, Tramore Coastguard, Tramore Sea Rescue Association (CRBI), National Ambulance Service and Rescue 117.

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Kilmore Quay RNLI launched on Friday evening (22 April) to assist a yacht with an injured crew member 20 miles off the Wexford coast.

The volunteer crew were requested to launch their all-weather Tamar class lifeboat, Killarney, by the Irish Coast Guard at 4:00 pm to assist the crew of a 40-foot ketch that was approximately 20 nautical miles south of Kilmore Quay.

One of the two crew on board the ketch had sustained an injury to his shoulder. Conditions in the area at the time were overcast and squally, with a Force 5 north easterly wind. The sea state at the time was described as moderate.

The lifeboat under Coxswain Aidan Bates with four crew members on board immediately launched and made its way to the scene. Arriving on scene at 5:10 pm, the crew launched their Y-boat, transferring a crew member to the vessel to assess the situation. A decision was made to establish a towline and return the vessel and crew to the nearest port which was Kilmore Quay. At 5:22 pm with the towline secured the boats were underway.

The lifeboat crew member remained onboard the yacht for the passage back to Kilmore Quay, arriving safely back to the harbour at 8:00pm. The local Irish Coast Guard Unit provided assistance to the injured man.

The Kilmore Quay RNLI lifeboat crew involved in the call out were Coxswain Aidan Bates, mechanic Philip Walsh and crew members Trevor Devereux, Sean Furlong and Nigel Kehoe.

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Usually, it’s the lifesavers of the RNLI who answer Mayday calls – it’s the most serious call for help. But this May, they need the public’s help.

The charity is calling on the people of Achill and its diaspora to support Achill Island RNLI lifeboat crew’s Mayday Mile to help raise vital funds to keep people safe this summer.

Organised by the island’s lifeboat crew, the Mayday fundraiser will see the volunteers rowing a distance of one mile from their lifeboat station in a small flotilla including a currach, some kayaks and other watercraft commonly seen in the pristine waters around Achill Island.

The crew will be carrying their pagers with them so they can respond to a call for help, should the need arise.

Funds raised through Mayday fundraising events will make sure that RNLI lifesavers have everything they need to keep families safe on the water and RNLI volunteer lifeboat crews will drop whatever they’re doing when a call for help comes in.

Eilish Power, Achill Island RNLI’s press officer says: “Summer is our busiest time of year, with thousands of people visiting the area and enjoying the water. A call for help can come from anywhere, from people enjoying days out with family or friends or the medical evacuations on our surrounding islands that our volunteer crew facilitate.

“Mayday is our own call for help, as we rely on the generosity of the public to support events like the Achill Island RNLI lifeboat crew’s Mayday Mile, and raise the funds that allow us to be there when we’re needed most.

“But we need to be ready. Training, kit, stations, fuel: these are just some of the things we need to save lives, and that your fundraising can help provide.”

The RNLI’s Mayday national fundraiser begins on Sunday 1 May and will run for the whole month across Ireland and the UK.

You can show your support for the Achill Island RNLI lifeboat crew’s Mayday Mile by giving what you can via the donation page, and visit the station’s Facebook page for details.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

Volunteer lifeboat crew from Howth RNLI visited a farm on Howth Head this week to meet and officially name a newborn kid goat as part of the conservation grazing project in the local area. The invitation was made by the Old Irish Goat Society.

The project has reintroduced Old Irish Goats to Howth after almost a century, to manage the growth of gorse in the local area resulting in reduced fire risk while also enhancing the biodiversity in the Dublin Bay UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.

The Howth herd recently concluded its first breeding season, with fifteen kid goats born in March increasing the herd size to forty one. In recognition of the role the crew of Howth RNLI plays in the local community, the project coordinators invited the crew to name one of the new born kid goats.

Volunteer lifeboat crew Fin Goggin with Beaufort the goatVolunteer lifeboat crew Fin Goggin with Beaufort the goat

Three volunteer crew members and the Howth Lifeboat Operations Manager visited the farm this week to meet the kid goat who has been named ‘Beaufort’.

Speaking following the visit to the farm, Howth RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager, Colm Newport said: “The station was delighted to be asked by the project coordinators to name a goat in honour of the crew of Howth RNLI. This project, just like Howth RNLI plays a vital role in the local community to protect people. It aims to reduce the potential damage caused by gorse fires in the local area and enhance the biodiversity of the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in Howth.

“The crew chose the name ‘Beaufort’ for the kid goat as it represents an area within our patch in Dublin Bay – the Beaufort bank, and also the Beaufort scale, the standard scale for describing wind strength. Our crews train in all weather conditions so that once the pager sounds the crew can respond to save lives at sea.”

Volunteer lifeboat crew Killian O'Reilly with Beaufort the goatVolunteer lifeboat crew Killian O'Reilly with Beaufort the goat

Melissa Jeuken, goat herder for the project said: “This project has reintroduced the Old Irish Goat to a habitat they inhabited nearly a century ago. The methods we are using help control the accumulation of gorse in the local area and is a more sustainable solution to managing this beautiful landscape. The fifteen recent additions to the herd, including ‘Beaufort’ brings the total herd size now to forty one. We hope to settle a group of goats on the east mountain in Howth this summer, and a further group on Ireland’s Eye, the island just north of Howth harbour at a later stage.

“The volunteer crew of Howth RNLI play a vital role for the local community and we wanted to recognise their dedication by inviting the crew to name one of the newborn kid goats who will hopefully go on to play a vital role for the sustainability of the local area for years to come.

“Beaufort is the son of the matriarch of the Howth Herd – Cailín. As such, he will take on a protective role for the herd as he grows up, just like Howth RNLI fulfils a protective role for the local community.”

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Aran Islands RNLI had a busy Wednesday (20 April) with near back-to-back callouts for medical evaluations.

The first came just after 10am when the Irish Coast Guard asked the volunteer crew to launch for a local man on the island of Inis Mór that was in need of further medical attention.

With the patient transferred safely aboard the lifeboat at the Kilronan Harbour pontoon with the aid of the local fire crew, following all strict COVID-19 health and safety guidelines, the lifeboat launched under coxswain Sean Ginely and a full crew and headed straight for Rossaveal Harbour and the waiting ambulance.

Weather conditions at the time of launching were fair, with good visibility a slight sea swell with a south-to-southeast Force 4-6 wind blowing.

After returning to the pontoon at Inis Mór Harbour, washing down the lifeboat and refuelling, the next medevac call came at 2.15pm for a man on the neighbouring Island of Inis Meáin who was in need of medical attention.

The lifeboat launched under coxswain John Ginely and headed straight for Inis Meáin, where the patient was helped aboard by the volunteer crew and taken to waiting paramedics at Rossaveal.

Speaking after the callouts, Ginely said: “A busy day, but the crew responded without hesitation and we got both patients on their way as quickly as possible. We would like to wish them both a speedy recovery.

“As we head towards the summer months, could we remind everyone to always heed safety guidelines when visiting the coast.

“Never swim alone and if heading out on the water, wear a lifejacket, always bring means of communication with you and let someone ashore know when you are due back.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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