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Donaghadee and Bangor RNLI escort 10 dinghy sailors caught in offshore wind

Lifeboats News Release

Volunteers from Donaghadee and Bangor RNLI were requested to launch their lifeboats this evening (Thursday 3 August) after a group of dinghy sailors got into difficulty off the County Down coast.

RNLI

Donaghadee RNLI

The inshore lifeboat from Bangor and the all-weather lifeboat from Donaghadee launched shortly after 5pm following a report from Belfast Coastguard that two dinghies with 10 people onboard were in difficulty in an area off South Briggs.

Weather conditions at the time were dry and sunny with a north west Force 4 wind blowing.

The sailors had got caught out by an offshore wind which made it difficult for them to make any headway back to land.

Once on scene, the lifeboat crews observed that the five people onboard each dinghy had managed to regain control.

Both lifeboats then escorted the sailors safely back to Ballyholme.

Speaking following the call out, Peter Irwin, Donaghadee RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager said: ‘Sailing is a popular activity on the County Down coastline especially at this time of year. Weather can change no matter how well you prepare for your trip and it was an offshore wind that caused problems this evening but thankfully all are safe and well. We would remind anyone going to sea this summer to respect the water. Always wear a lifejacket and always carry a means of calling or signalling for help. Should you get into difficulty dial 999 or 112 and ask for the Coastguard.’

Ends

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For more information please contact Nuala McAloon RNLI Press Officer Tel: 00 353 87 648 3547 or email Nuala_McAloon@rnli.org.uk or Niamh Stephenson RNLI Public Relations Manager Tel: 00 353 87 1254 124 or Niamh_Stephenson@rnli.org.uk

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The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. Our volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service in the United Kingdom and Ireland from 238 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen, Carrybridge and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 240 beaches around the UK and operates a specialist flood rescue team, which can respond anywhere across the UK and Ireland when inland flooding puts lives at risk.

The RNLI relies on public donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. As a charity it is separate from, but works alongside, government-controlled and funded coastguard services. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 our lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved at least 140,000 lives. Volunteers make up 95% of the charity, including 4,600 volunteer lifeboat crew members and 3,000 volunteer shore crew. Additionally, tens of thousands of other dedicated volunteers raise funds and awareness, give safety advice, and help in our museums, shops and offices.

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