Busy weekend for new Kilrush RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager, Shawna Johnson
Over the May Bank Holiday weekend Kilrush RNLI volunteers launched to assist a disabled fishing vessel with two people onboard and a capsized kayaker.
On Friday last, 30 April, Kilrush RNLI assisted a fishing vessel with two people onboard after its propeller had become tangled in lobster pots north of Loop Head Lighthouse. Kilrush RNLI located the disabled vessel and took it on tow to Carrigaholt Pier, a distance of approximately 11 nautical miles.
On Sunday (2 May), Kilrush RNLI responded to a report that a kayaker had capsized and was unable to recover themselves back into their kayak. A concerned onlooker spotted the casualty in Rinneville Bay, north west of Kilcredaun Lighthouse as they were swimming beside their kayak while making their way to shore.
Kilrush RNLI volunteers arrived on scene and located the casualty a few metres from the shore. As Kilrush RNLI's inshore lifeboat was restricted by depth, Kilkee Coast Guard shore based unit assisted the casualty to safety from the shore.
Shawna Johnson was appointed volunteer Lifeboat Operations Manager at Kilrush RNLI in April and has hit the ground running, overseeing three call outs since taking over the helm. Shawna is not a stranger to the station, having served in the role of Deputy Launching Authority prior to her new position. As Lifeboat Operations Manager, Shawna will now be responsible for managing all operational activities at the RNLI station, as well as authorising lifeboat launches.
Shawna said: ‘Summer brings more people to the coast, which means more emergency call outs and Kilrush RNLI remain ready to launch should they be required. We are fortunate to have such a dedicated team of volunteers at Kilrush Lifeboat Station who are ready to drop everything at a moment’s notice to save lives at sea. Following a busy Bank Holiday weekend we continue to urge anyone who sees somebody in trouble in the water or along the coast to use VHF Ch 16 or Dial 112 or 999 and ask for the Coast Guard.'
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.