Two Sea Kayakers Rescued by Clifden RNLI
Shortly after 4.30pm this afternoon (Tuesday 6th August) 14 volunteer crew members of Clifden RNLI responded rapidly to reports from the Coast Guard of a person in the water in Ballyconneely.
Two kayakers were at sea when one entered the water and got into difficulty when separated from her kayak, which had filled with water and capsized. The alarm was raised by a vigilant member of the public from the shore who gave very detailed information of the location and scene.
Clifden’s Atlantic 85 helmed by Joe Acton was first on the scene and the crew found the two women standing and waving towards them from offshore rocks near the Connemara Golf Course.
The women and the remaining kayak were taken on board, quickly assessed and given blankets and then brought safely to shore where members of Cleggan Coastguard Unit took over their care.
Clifden’s inshore D class lifeboat was also on the scene having travelled by road and then launched at a nearby beach. Helmed by Owen Hayes, the second lifeboat recovered the other kayak and also returned to shore. The Mersey class all weather lifeboat was also en route to the scene with five crew on board but was stood down when the casualties were rescued.
This was the third launch in a week by the Clifden lifeboat crew and the Station’s Operations Manager John Brittain said ‘The crew did very well today to get 3 boats on the water in a matter of minutes and thankfully we were on the scene very quickly. This is an example of how situations at sea can change rapidly, and the vigilance of the public is so important, especially at busy times of year and in holiday destinations’.
Key facts about the RNLI
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.