Skerries RNLI respond to reports of red distress flares

Lifeboats News Release

Skerries RNLI were tasked by Dublin Coast Guard to investigate reported sightings of several red distress flares near Loughshinny on Monday (21 June) evening.

Skerries RNLI Searching the shoreline from Loughshinny to Rush

RNLI/Gerry Canning

Skerries RNLI Searching the shoreline from Loughshinny to Rush

Skerries RNLI volunteers launched their Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat “Louis Simson” shortly after 9pm following a 999 call to Dublin Coast Guard reporting that a number of members of the public had spotted several red distress flares between Loughshinny and Lambay island.

The lifeboat rounded the headland at Red island and navigated towards the general area indicated by the callers. Once on scene a search of the immediate area was quickly carried out. With no obvious signs of any vessels or persons in distress, a search of the shoreline from Loughshinny to Rush was then conducted. With nothing found the lifeboat was proceeding towards Lambay island to carry out a search further out to sea when they received an update that Skerries Coast Guard unit were speaking to a person who was flying a drone in the area.

The drone operator confirmed that he was operating in the area the flares were reported at the time the 999 calls were received. With this information and with a search not finding anything, Dublin Coast Guard were satisfied that it was a false alarm with good intent and the lifeboat was stood down and returned to station.

The lifeboat and station were deep cleaned, sanitised and made ready for the next call out.

At the time there was a force three to four northerly wind with a moderate sea swell and good visibility.

Speaking about the call out, volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer for Skerries RNLI, Gerry Canning said: ‘We would always encourage the public to dial 999 and ask for the Coast Guard if they think someone may be in trouble on the water. Thankfully in this case it was a false alarm with good intent. The crew did get to enjoy a magnificent summer solstice sunset on the way home.”

RNLI media contacts

For more information please telephone Gerry Canning, Skerries RNLI volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on 087 988 4965 or email [email protected] or Nuala McAloon, RNLI Ireland Media Officer on 087 648 3547 or email [email protected] or Niamh Stephenson, RNLI Ireland Media Manager on 087 1254 124 or [email protected]

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 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and 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.

Learn more about the RNLI

For more information please visit the RNLI website or Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. News releases, videos and photos are available on the News Centre.

Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or by email.