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Larne RNLI assist five rowers in a run aground rowing boat on Muck Island

Lifeboats News Release

Larne RNLI were requested to launch by Belfast Coastguard on Saturday (2 July) to reports of a GB row challenge boat with a broken rudder on Muck Island off Islandmagee.

RNLI/Steven Lee

Larne ILB and ALB assist 5 rowers

Launching both lifeboats at 10.47am into a moderate sea, with a light breeze, the volunteer crew headed towards the last reported location of the causalities.

Upon reaching the run aground boat, ensuring that all five people were safe and well, the in-shore lifeboat, Terry, was tasked to start a tow to bring the rowing boat back to the safety of the East Antrim Boat Club.

Towing proved challenging due to the broken rudder, but the in-shore lifeboat deployed a sea anchor to control the movement of the vessel and to make it easier to steer.

It was decided that the tow should be passed to the bigger all-weather lifeboat, Dr John McSparran, which brought the rowing boat into the shelter of Larne harbour.

The decision was made to secure the rowing boat at Wymer’s Pier, at East Antrim Boat Club, so the tow was passed back to the in-shore lifeboat to bring the casualty alongside at Wymer’s whilst in Larne harbour.

After the call out Larne RNLI’s coxswain, Chris Dorman said: ‘The casualties were well prepared for most eventualities, having the correct safety equipment and good working gear onboard. The sea is unpredictable and can catch anyone out, that’s why if you are ever in trouble at sea you should contact 999 or 112 and ask for the Coastguard.’


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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 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.

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