Wicklow RNLI launch to investigate reports of an aircraft in difficulty

Lifeboats News Release

Both Wicklow RNLI lifeboats were launched this afternoon (Thursday 14 September), following a Coast Guard pager alert to investigate reports of an aircraft in difficulties off the Wicklow coast.

Wicklow Inshore lifeboat alongside the damaged drone

RNLI/Peter Byrne

Wicklow Inshore lifeboat alongside the damaged drone

The initial report was of a light aircraft ditching into the sea near the Six-mile point. As the lifeboats were approaching the search area, more information was received from the Coast Guard, and it turned out the plane was a large, unmanned drone being flown in the area and had crashed into the sea.

Weather conditions in the area were calm with good visibility. The inshore lifeboat crew located the badly damaged drone floating a mile off Newcastle beach, it was towed ashore and handed over to the owner.

Speaking after the call out, Tommy Dover, Lifeboat Press Officer said: ‘This was a very quick response by our volunteer crew this afternoon to what could have been a potentially serious incident. If you find yourself in an emergency situation or spot someone else in trouble, you should call 999 or 112 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 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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