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Rosslare Harbour RNLI rescues windsurfer drifting out to sea

Lifeboats News Release

Rosslare Harbour RNLI rescued a windsurfer who fell off his board and got into difficulty on Sunday afternoon, ending up in the water for an hour and a half.

Nigel Millard

The volunteer crew was requested to launch their all-weather lifeboat by the Irish Coast Guard at 1.15pm on Sunday (13 January) after a passer-by raised the alarm.

The man had fallen off his board and despite attempting to get back on, he kept getting blown off by the wind and was being swept out to sea.

The lifeboat under Coxswain Art Sheil and with six crew members onboard, launched immediately and made their way to the scene.

Weather conditions at the time were described as blowing a Force 4-5 south to south westerly wind.

On arrival, the lifeboat crew located the casualty 1.1 nautical mile offshore. The windsurfer was cold and in shock but otherwise safe and well.

He was subsequently transported onto the lifeboat where he was first assessed and then brought back to the comfort of Rosslare Harbour’s lifeboat station.

Speaking following the call out, Dave Maloney, Rosslare Harbour RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager said: ‘We would like to commend the member of the public who spotted the windsurfer in difficulty and raised the alarm, that was an important factor in this call out as the man was in the water for an hour and a half. Thankfully, despite being cold and shook up, he was otherwise ok.

‘It is important to always respect the water and to be mindful that conditions at sea can change and cause problems. We would encourage people to always carry a means for calling for help such as a personal locator beacon, especially if windsurfing alone - it could be a lifesaver. Always tell someone you are going out and when you will be back. Make sure they know where you are sailing and who to call if you are not back in time.’

Ends

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For more information please telephone Nuala McAloon, Regional Media Officer on 0876483547 or Nuala_McAloon@rnli.org.uk or Niamh Stephenson, Regional Media Manager on 0871254124 or Niamh_Stephenson@rnli.org.uk

Key facts about the RNLI

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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The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number 20003326 in the Republic of Ireland

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