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Lough Derg RNLI assists 3 people on a 16ft speed boat adrift near Portumna

Lifeboats News Release

On Thursday evening 19 February, Valentia Coast Guard requested Lough Derg RNLI lifeboat to assist three people on a 16ft speed boat adrift at the most northern part of the lake near Portumna. It was reported that the casualties had been wake boarding when their vessel had suffered engine failure.

Consul and instruments on the lifeboat on a nighttime callout

RNLI/Eleanor Hooker

Lough Derg RNLI Lifeboat 19 January 2023

At 6.05pm Lough Derg RNLI lifeboat Jean Spier launched with helm Eleanor Hooker and crew Doireann Kennedy, Joe O’Donoghue and Oisín Higgins on board. The lake was flat calm, it was a clear, dark night with a star-filled sky. The air temperature was below freezing so the lifeboat crew brought a grab-bag with three blankets.

Valentia Coast Guard provided the lifeboat with a contact for the casualties. The lifeboat requested the casualties to use their phone torches when they saw they lifeboat approaching.

At 6.25pm, as the lifeboat passed Terryglass Bay en route to Portumna, the casualties lit their phone torches revealing their location. They had drifted south of their original reported location and were close to Lough Derg navigation mark J.

At 6.30pm the lifeboat was alongside the casualty vessel. RNLI volunteers established that all three people on board were unharmed but were feeling cold. Lifeboat crew provided the casualties with blankets and told them to wrap up and sit in a huddle at the bow of their boat. The lifeboat crew set up an alongside tow and made way to Terryglass Harbour.


At 7pm the casualty vessel was safely tied alongside at Terryglass Harbour. Having ensured the casualties were safe and ashore, the lifeboat departed the scene and was back at Station at 8.15pm.


Jeremy Freeman, Deputy Launching Authority at Lough Derg RNLI advises boat users ‘to dress appropriately for winter weather and water temperatures. Make sure your engines are serviced and always carry sufficient life jackets for everyone on board and ensure that they are worn’.

Ends

Notes to editors

RNLI media contacts

For more information please telephone Eleanor Hooker, Lough Derg RNLI volunteer helm and Lifeboat Press Officer on 0877535207 or [email protected] or Nuala McAloon, Regional Media Officer on 0876483547 [email protected] or Niamh Stephenson, Regional Media Manager on 0871254124 or [email protected]

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Key facts about the RNLI

The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around Ireland and the UK. The RNLI operates 46 lifeboat stations in Ireland. The RNLI is independent of government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, the charity has saved over 142,700 lives.

Search light illuminating the search area and the RNLI letters on the starboard sponson

RNLI/Eleanor Hooker

Lough Derg RNLI 19 January 2023

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.

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