Two callouts in 24 hours keeps Portaferry RNLI volunteers busy

Lifeboats News Release

On Saturday 15 September at 4.45pm, a volunteer RNLI crew from Portaferry launched to the aid of two men in trouble in the water just off Ballyhenry Island, a small island located approximately 1.5 miles north of Portaferry on the eastern shore of Strangford Lough in County Down.

At the time, the weather was cloudy with good visibility, a southerly wind and calm seas. The two men had been using a jet ski when one of them had fallen from the ski and was struggling to get back to it. The second man, realising that the first man was in difficulty, started to swim from the shore to try and help.

The RNLI volunteers from Portaferry launched at 4.50pm and were on scene at 5.00pm where the lifeboat crew took both men on board the lifeboat before returning them to Cooke Street Quay in Portaferry and into the care of the Portaferry Coastguard team.

The second launch was in response to a mayday call regarding an angler who had fallen from rocks into the sea just off Ardglass Golf Course in county Down.

The pagers sounded at 8.36am and the crew were on the water at 8.42am arriving on scene at 9.10am.

The weather conditions at the time were overcast with good visibility, a south west force three wind and moderate seas. The male casualty had in the meantime been picked up by a local boat from Ardglass and returned to shore at Ardglass Marina. The volunteer RNLI crew from Portaferry continued to the Marina where they administered casualty care on the man before departing at 9.40am leaving him in the care of the local Coastguard team.

Commenting on the weekends events, Simon Rogers, the Lifeboat Operations Manager for Portaferry RNLI, said, ‘We can go for weeks without any callouts, but during those quiet periods our volunteer boat and shore crew members train hard every week, preparing for situations such as this.

It is thanks to their dedication and hard work that we are able to respond so quickly an as often as required to help those in trouble at sea.’


RNLI media contacts
For more information please contact Bernard Roddy, Portaferry RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer at or telephone Nuala McAloon, RNLI Press Officer Ireland on 00353876483547, email or Niamh Stephenson, RNLI Public Relations Manager Ireland on 00 353 87 1254 124 or

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The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and, in a normal year, more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.

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