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Displaying items by tag: RNLI

Both Portrush RNLI lifeboats were launched within an hour of each other to separate incidents on Northern Ireland’s North Coast this afternoon (Wednesday 24 February).

Initially, the volunteer crew were requested to launch the all-weather lifeboat by Belfast Coastguard at 12.36pm in response to reports of a surfer in difficulty at Castlerock.

While en-route, the crew received notification that the surfer had made it back to the beach unaided and all was well.

When they were returning to station, they were re-tasked to reports of two persons who had been swept off the rocks just between Portrush and Portstewart.

The all-weather crew requested that the inshore lifeboat was also launched as the casualties were reported to be close to the rocks.

Conditions and visibility today were good which helped both boats to make good time.

However again, before the ILB arrived on scene, the two persons had been able to get back onto the rocks without assistance from the volunteer lifeboat crews.

Beni McAllister, lifeboat operations manager at Portrush RNLI, said: “Although both boats were launched today and were stood down on both shouts, we would ask that if people feel that there is someone in difficulty in the sea, that they dial 999 and ask for the coastguard.

“We have said this before, but our crews would rather be safe than sorry.”

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Lee Early, deputy coxswain of the RNLI’s Arranmore lifeboat in Donegal lost his life in 2019, but his name is one of 10,000 which will be inscribed on the hull of the new Shannon class lifeboat bound for Clifden, Co Galway.

The launch a memory campaign run as a fundraiser for Clifden has been such a success that it is already a sell-out.

Among those who have also booked names, at a suggested donation of €30, are Mary McDonagh of Claddaghduff, Co Galway who is remembering her father, the late Fechin Mulkerrin Senior and her two brothers, Fechin and Liam.

Fechin Mulkerrin (blue shirt) who died in 2009Fechin Mulkerrin who died in 2009

“ Liam, a fisherman, drowned at the age of 25 in Galway in 1984, and my brother Fechín died with a neighbour Tony Coohill off Aughris point near Claddaghduff while checking pots in April 2009,” McDonagh explains.

Liam Mulkerrin who died in 1984Liam Mulkerrin who died in 1984

“Fechín had grown up children and grandchildren, while Tony had two young children, the youngest a baby,” she says.

“They had only been back fishing a short while after the economic downturn hit construction.”

Her father, also Fechín, had made six currachs for the Cleggan regatta in 1987 in memory of Liam several years after his death, and they were launched at an event attended by the late Fianna Fáil minister Brian Lenihan.

Fechín MulkerrinMary McDonagh's father, Fechín Mulkerrin

Journalist Megan Roantree is also remembering her late father, Sean, who was on both the RNLI Aran island crew and skippered the Aran ferry. However, Megan discovered something rather unusual about her dad when she was double-checking the spelling of her name...and for any of you who remember it, the BBC series Colditz is a clue...

Journalist Megan RoantreeJournalist Megan Roantree

Megan Roantree with her late father, SeanMegan with her late father, Captain Sean Roanteee

Both Mary McDonagh and Megan Roantree spoke to Wavelengths about what the RNLI launch a memory campaign has meant to them, and you can hear them both below in the podcast

This group photo is of from the launch of currachs built by her dad Fechín in memory of his son Liam which were launched at Cleggan regatta in 1987, three years after Liam's death (from left to right) Teresa Murray, Thomas Madden, Fr John McCarthy, Thomas King, Peter A. Lacey, Seán Birmingham, William Hughes, Bernadette Conroy, Brian Lenihan Snr., Stephen King, Fechín Mulkerrin Snr., Mark Killilea and Séamus Brennan.This group photo is of from the launch of currachs built by her dad Fechín in memory of his son Liam which were launched at Cleggan regatta in 1987, three years after Liam's death (from left to right) Teresa Murray, Thomas Madden, Fr John McCarthy, Thomas King, Peter A. Lacey, Seán Birmingham, William Hughes, Bernadette Conroy, Brian Lenihan Snr., Stephen King, Fechín Mulkerrin Snr., Mark Killilea and Séamus Brennan.

And a recording of the 1987 Cleggan regatta, where the late Brian Lenihan launched Fechín Mulkerrin’s six currachs, can be seen on Connemara History’s social media page here.

Published in Wavelength Podcast
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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

Courtown RNLI braved difficult sea conditions to recover a small boat that ran aground north of Cahore Harbour in Co Wexford yesterday, Sunday 21 February.

Lifeboat volunteers were called at 3.45pm to the vessel with three on board, which had reportedly lost power around a mile north of Cahore Harbour at Glasscarrig Beach.

Courtown RNLI reports that arriving at the scene in the inshore lifeboat, its crew learned that the boat had lost power soon after launch, and had subsequently washed up on the beach and rocks.

All three occupants had managed to get safely ashore in the meantime. But recovery of their boat proved difficult due to the choppy conditions at sea.

A tow line was eventually secured and the boat was towed back to Cahore Pier by Cahore Inshore Rescue, who also attended the scene.

Speaking after the callout, Courtown RNLI lifeboat operations manager Sam Kennedy said: “It was great to see that the three people managed to get to shore safely.

“Our crew responded readily today and adhered to all Covid-19 guidelines currently in place at Courtown RNLI.”

The inshore lifeboat on this callout was helmed by Peter Browne with crew members Fergus Slevin and Cormac Kinsella.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Galway RNLI lifeboat rescued a swimmer who got into difficulty off Blackrock beach in Salthill this afternoon during very challenging weather conditions.

The alarm was raised at 12.25 pm by a pedestrian who saw the woman struggling in the water between Blackrock and Ladies Beach, according to the RNLI.

The Irish Coast Guard sought the assistance of the lifeboat which launched from Galway Docks a short time later.

The crew was directed to the woman who was a couple of hundred metres from the shore opposite the Galway Bay Hotel, and the took her on board and brought her back to the lifeboat station - where an ambulance was awaiting with paramedic assistance.

The woman's condition was assessed, and she was able to return home a short time later.

Met Éireann's sea area forecast from 12 noon today had warned of gale-force eight to nine southerly winds for all coastal waters, including the Irish Sea.

RNLI Galway's deputy launch authority Shane Folan noted that there were "very challenging weather conditions, with high winds and breaking surf".

“We would advise anyone thinking of going swimming to let someone else know," he said.

The RNLI Galway lifeboat volunteer crew on the call-out were: David Badger (helmsman), Martin Oliver, Ross Forde and James Rhattigan.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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The Dun Laoghaire Harbour Water Safety Team has produced a video on checking and maintaining a lifejacket lead by the RNLI's Laura Jackson (see vid below) ahead of the 2021 boating season.

Choosing the right lifejacket or buoyancy aid for your activity can be difficult. With many different options to choose from and technical language that can be confusing, you might end up using something unsuitable, or worse, not using one at all.

In Ireland, the law requires that an appropriate lifejacket or buoyancy aid must be carried for everyone onboard all vessels. If the craft is under 7m, personal flotation devices must be worn at all times on an open vessel or on deck on a vessel with accommodation.

Anyone under the age of 16 must wear a personal flotation device at all times on an open boat or on deck if the vessel has accommodation, irrespective of the size of the vessel.

A personal flotation device (PFD) is something you wear that will keep you afloat should you enter the water. There are a number of different types, but the most common are buoyancy aids and, in particular, lifejackets.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

The first shout of 2021 for the Newcastle RNLI Inshore Lifeboat was a call out from Belfast Coastguard just before 3 pm today to reports of two teenage girls cut off by the tide on Murlough Beach.
The beach is a four-mile stretch just east of Newcastle town on Dundrum Bay in the south of Co Down and is owned by the National Trust.

The Inshore D class lifeboat "Eliza" arrived on scene soon afterwards and commenced a shoreline search. Due to surf size, the All-weather Mersey class Lifeboat, Eleanor, and Bryant Girling were also requested to launch and assist with a higher platform for visibility.

But as the crew were preparing to launch the ALB a further page from Belfast Coastguard at 3.15 pm cancelled the launch as both girls had been safely located by parents and were leaving the area.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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As the RNLI continues to operate as normal during the Covid-19 pandemic, the charity is still unable to fundraise out in person in the community.

With more people needing the lifeboat crews as they stay home, support from the public is more important than ever — and Carrybridge RNLI in Northern Ireland is one unit that has risen to the challenge by making it easier for people to back their vital work.

The RNLI operates two lifeboat stations for Upper and Lower Lough Erne, at Carrybridge and Enniskillen respectively, and has seen a drop in funds raised locally in 2020 as traditional fundraising activities had to be cancelled.

In many cases, when the lifeboat pager goes off, volunteers will need to abandon homeschooling or work and head to the lifeboat station to answer the call for help.

Stephen Scott, lifeboat operations manager at Carrybridge RNLI, says: “We couldn’t do what we do without the support of the public. The RNLI has experienced a drop in funds locally, but we are rescuing more people than ever before.

“We are facing challenging times and are calling on people to consider making a donation this year to ensure we can continue saving lives on inland waters.

“We have moved our fundraising online in these challenging times and set up a JustGiving page for the lifeboat station where people can donate directly to their local lifeboat station in Carrybridge.”

To support the RNLI at Carrybridge, helping to ensure the charity’s brave volunteers can continue saving lives on Lough Erne, visit their JustGiving page HERE.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

Castletownbere RNLI were launched last night (Tuesday 10 February 2021) just after 11.00 pm to go to the assistance of a seriously ill skipper on board a fishing vessel off the West Cork Coast.

Castletownbere RNLI lifeboat was tasked by Valentia Coastguard Radio last night to go to the assistance of a 30-metre Spanish-registered fishing trawler, located south west of Castletownbere which reported that the skipper had suddenly become seriously ill.

The lifeboat was launched within minutes under the command of Coxswain Dave Fenton with crew Marney O’Donogue, John Paul Downey, Kyle Cronin and Donagh Murphy and located the vessel at 12.09 nineteen miles south-west of Ardnakinna lighthouse. Conditions on-scene were challenging with a 3-4 metre swell and gusting east northeast winds up to Force 6.

The lifeboat then escorted the trawler to just inside the mouth of Castletownbere harbour where local pilot went aboard and took command of the vessel. The casualty, a man in his late fifties, was transferred to the lifeboat in calmer waters. The lifeboat then took the casualty to Castletownbere RNLI station where he transferred a waiting ambulance at 2.10 a.m. He was taken to hospital for medical assessment and treatment. Meanwhile, the fishing was safely berthed at Castletownbere Pier. The lifeboat was made ready for service again by 2.20 a.m.

Commenting on the callout Castletownbere RNLI Lifeboat Deputy Launching Authority, Felix O’Donoghue, complimented the crew on its rapid response, maintaining strict COVID-19 protocols and the safe transfer of the ill casualty’.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats
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Galway RNLI Lifeboat recovered a casualty from the Seaweed Point causeway off Blackrock, Salthill tonight.

The alert was raised after a member of the public contacted the authorities at about 5 pm.

The caller reported seeing a casualty at Seaweed point, off Blackrock, while out walking in the area.

The Irish Coast Guard requested the assistance of Galway RNLI Lifeboat and a member of the shore crew drove to the scene. Members of Galway Fire Service also assisted.

The lifeboat launched from Galway Docks a short time later and two crew members together with the Fire Service crew went ashore and carried the casualty on to the vessel.

He was transported back to the lifeboat station at Galway docks, where Gardai and the RNLI lifeboat medical officer assisted.

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