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Displaying items by tag: Rescue 116

#Coastguard - The funeral of Irish Coast Guard Captain Mark Duffy took place in Blackrock, Co Louth yesterday (Thursday 30 March), as The Irish Times reports.

President Michael D Higgins was among those in attendance to pay respects to the long-serving coastguard pilot, husband and father of two, who died when the Dublin-based Sikorsky S-92 helicopter carrying him and three fellow crew went down off the Mayo coast on 14 March.

Capt Dara Fitzgerald was recovered within hours of the incident but died in hospital shortly after.

Capt Duffy’s remains were recovered earlier this week from the cockpit of Rescue 116, on the sea bed off Black Rock west of the Mullet Peninsula, where divers continue to work amid “hugely challenging” conditions.

Salvage experts who helped recover Rambler 100 off Fastnet in 2011 are now being drafted in to assist in the lifting of the helicopter wreck in the search for missing crew men Paul Ormsby and Ciaran Smith.

The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.

Published in Coastguard

#Rescue116 - Divers are working at the Rescue 116 wreck site to recover the body of one of three crewmen missing since the Irish Coast Guard helicopter went down off the North Mayo coast 11 days ago, as The Irish Times reports.

Reports elsewhere have identified the body but Belmullet Garda Station said it was not possible at this time to confirm whether it was the remains of Mark Duffy, Ciaran Smith or Paul Ormsby.

Their cremate, Capt Dara Fitzpatrick, was buried last week after she died within hours of her recovery from the water following the tragic incident at Black Rock, west of the Mullet Peninsula.

Yesterday evening the coastguard helicopter’s flight recorder, or ‘black box’, was taken from the sea bed and will undergo technical examination in the UK, as previously reported on Afloat.ie.

Published in Coastguard

#Rescue116 - Search teams have successfully recovered Rescue 116’s flight recorder, or ‘black box’, from the sea bed off Black Rock on the North Mayo coast.

The flight recorder is now in the custody of the Air Accident Investigation Unit (AAIU) and will be taken under escort to Baldonnel Aerodrome, where it will be onward transported to the Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) in the UK tomorrow (Saturday 25 March) for download.

The operation comes 11 days after the tragic incident that took the life of Capt Dara Fitzpatrick, while her three Irish Coast Guard crewmates — Mark Duffy, Paul Ormsby and Ciarán Smith — remain missing.

Published in Coastguard

#Rescue116 - The Irish Lights vessel Granuaile is in Galway preparing to join the search for the missing crew of Rescue 116, according to Galway Bay FM.

The multifunctional vessel, built to operate in difficult sea conditions, is being stocked with additional equipment ahead of a major search of the crash site off Blacksod in Co Mayo scheduled for tomorrow (Sunday 19 March) with the forecast of improved weather conditions.

TheJournal.ie reports that what’s believed to be wreckage from the Sikorsky S92 helicopter has been found on the island of Black Rock, west of Blacksod, but there are no signs of a crash having occurred at that site.

The coastguard helicopter’s black box was also detected on Wednesday (15 March) near the island, but divers have been prevented from reaching its location due to the poor weather and sea state.

Three crew – chief pilot Mark Duffy and winch men Paul Ormsby and Ciarán Smith — remain missing after the incident in the early hours of Tuesday (14 March) as the Dublin-based Irish Coast Guard helicopter provided top cover for a medevac.

The funeral of Capt Dara Fitzpatrick, who was taken from the scene in the first hours of the search and rescue effort, takes place this morning (Saturday 18 March).

Meanwhile, it emerged on Thursday (16 March) that Rescue 116 was tasked to the scene on Tuesday after the Irish Air Corps was unable to provide assistance due to reduced capacity, according to The Irish Times.

Published in Coastguard

#Rescue116 - Tributes have poured in for Dara Fitzpatrick, the senior pilot who lost her life in yesterday’s Irish Coast Guard helicopter incident off Blacksod in Co Mayo.

Speaking to RTÉ Radio 1’s Morning Ireland earlier, sister Niamh Fitzpatrick, praised Dara’s love for her coastguard job “because she loved helping people”, as TheJournal.ie reports.

“It never occurred to Dara that she shouldn’t do this [type of work] because she was female, it wasn’t easy for her crew or her to be the only female in a male environment, but she was excellent at [her job],” said Niamh, a broadcaster with Today FM, who joined her family in vigil in Castlebar overnight.

President Michael D Higgins echoed those sentiments, saying in a statement: “We are all grateful for the courage, resolution and exemplary commitment to the aims of the Cost Guard that Capt Fitzpatrick and her colleagues have consistently displayed.”

Dara Fitzpatrick was one of the Irish Coast Guard’s most experienced officers, and one of the first women to fly for the Irish Coast Guard’s precursor, the Irish Marine Emergency Services.

Longtime Afloat readers will also recall the feature in June 1994 that highlighted Dara as a then 22-year-old co-pilot on helicopter rescues, four years after she began flying.

More recently, in 2013, Afloat.ie covered Capt Fitzpatrick’s pioneering missions as part of Ireland’s first all-female SAR helicopter crew.

Meanwhile, The Irish Times reports that searches continue off Blacksod in North Mayo today (Wednesday 15 March) for Capt Fitzpatrick’s three missing crew mates from Rescue 116 — who have been named as chief pilot Mark Duffy, from Dundalk, and winch men Paul Ormsby and Ciarán Smith, both from North Co Dublin.

Published in Coastguard

#Rescue116 - One person has been taken from the scene in the search for an Irish Coast Guard helicopter and crew that went missing off Mayo in the early hours of this morning, according to the Galway Advertiser.

Update 2.55pm: The Irish Times confirms that the casualty recovered this morning, named as Captain Dara Fitzpatrick, was pronounced dead in hospital. Capt Fitzpatrick was one of the Irish Coast Guard's most senior helicopter pilots, and in 2013 flew Ireland's first missions with an all-female flight crew.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, a major search operation was launched some six miles west of Blacksod at 1am this morning (Tuesday 14 March) after contact was lost with the Dublin-based Rescue 116 as it provided top cover during a rescue mission.

Coastguard officials conformed that four crew were on board the Sikorsky S92 long-range SAR aircraft at the time.

The individual recovered from the scene within the last 30 minutes is reportedly in critical condition.

Published in Coastguard

#Coastguard - This month sees the start of construction of a new hangar at Dublin Airport for the Irish Coast Guard helicopter fleet, as Coast Monkey reports.

The new operations centre at the current base for Rescue 116 comes half-way into CHC Ireland’s 10-year contract to provide coastguard search and rescue services.

Works to be completed by the middle of next year will see the demolition of the existing 600 sqm hangar with a 2,000 sqm facility from where Ireland’s four SAR bases — at Dublin, Sligo, Shannon and Waterford — will be co-ordinated.

Coast Monkey has more on the story HERE.

Published in Coastguard

#MissingSwimmerRTÉ News is reporting that a swimmer taken from the water after going missing off Dalkey Island in Dublin Bay this morning (Sunday 7 April) has died.

Earlier this evening The Irish Times reported that the 35-year-old man was in a critical condition in Tallaght Hospital after being recovered from the water off Sorrento Terrace.

Lifeboat volunteers with Dun Laoghaire RNLI and the Irish Coast Guard's Dublin-based helicopter Rescue 116 were involved in the search which began around 11am today after the swimmer failed to return to shore.

Published in News Update

#MCIB - The death by drowning of a South Dublin boatman may have been avoided had he been wearing a lifejacket or buoyancy aid, according to investigators.

The report by the Marine Casualty Investigation Board (MCIB) into the death of Aidan Fennell off Dalkey Island on 12 October 2010 found that an epileptic episode could have caused him to fall overboard from his rowboat and become disorientated once in the water.

Fennell, 43, was considered a competent boatman and a strong swimmer used to cold water, though was prone to seizures where he could not control his muscles and lost sense with reality, on occasion becoming unconscious.

On the afternoon of 12 October last year Fennell had launched his boat from Coliemore Harbour in fair conditions, intending to ferry a German family to Dalkey Island. When they pulled out of the trip, Fennell decided to row to the island on his own, with no flotation devices on board.

He was last seen by friend Kevin O'Farrell at 2.50pm. Around half an hour later, O'Farrell became concerned as to Fennell's whereabouts when he had been out of sight for some time.

After notifying the Irish Coast Guard, the Dun Laoghaire lifeboat and coastguard helicopter Rescue 116 were dispatched to search the area. Fennell's boat was located before 4pm washed on the rocks at the southeast end of Dalkey Island, and his body was found in the water close by some 10 minutes later.

No injuries were found on Fennell's body, suggesting that he went into the water before his boat washed up on the rocks.

The report concluded that if he had fallen overboard in normal conditions "it is considered likely that he could have swum to his boat, or clung on to the oars.

"However, if he had suffered an epileptic episode... he would have had great difficulty in staying afloat, in particular without having the buoyancy assistance of a life jacket."

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

Published in MCIB
Irish Coast Guard helicopter Rescue 116 was on hand Wednesday to save a woman seen in the water close to cliffs near the Baily Lighthouse on Howth Head.
SAR Ireland reports that the helicopter was on a training exercise just up the coast in Malahide when passers-by raised the alarm with the Marine Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC).
Rescue 116 sped to the scene and after a short low-level search the woman was spotted and taken to a waiting ambulance at the coastguard base for treatment.
The Irish Times says Howth gardaí are investigating the incident.

Irish Coast Guard helicopter Rescue 116 was on hand Wednesday to save a woman seen in the water close to cliffs near the Baily Lighthouse on Howth Head.

SAR Ireland reports that the helicopter was on a training exercise just up the coast in Malahide when passers-by raised the alarm with the Marine Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC).

Rescue 116 sped to the scene and after a short low-level search the woman was spotted and taken to a waiting ambulance at the coastguard base for treatment.

The Irish Times says Howth gardaí are investigating the incident.

Published in Rescue
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