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Lough Derg RNLI assist 4 people after their boat ran aground above Victoria Lock

Lifeboats News Release

At 12.50pm today, Sunday September 9, Valentia Coast Guard requested Lough Derg RNLI to assist 4 people after their boat ran aground when they took a wrong turn in the river above Victoria Lock on the River Shannon.

Winds were west-southwesterly, Force 4/5, gusting 5/6, rain showers, otherwise visibility very good.

At 1pm, the lifeboat launched with helm Eleanor Hooker, Owen Cavanagh and Joe O’Donoghue on board. From the boathouse, Peter Kennedy, Deputy Launching Authority at Lough Derg RNLI made contact with Tom McGarry, the Bridge Controller at Portumna to ask him to open the bridge to permit the lifeboat up the river. Mr. Kennedy and fellow Deputy Launching Authority, Tom Hayes called Lock keepers, Stephen McGarry and Ken O’Carroll, at Victoria Lock at Meelick, to let them know that the lifeboat would be at the Lock in an hour. Valentia Coast Guard gave the lifeboat volunteers co-ordinates for the casualty vessel and advised that water levels at the casualty’s location were very low.

The lifeboat arrived on scene at 2.11pm. As the casualty vessel was in shallow water, the lifeboat approached with caution, taking frequent soundings and visual assessment of water depth. The people on board were safe and unharmed. The skipper had dropped anchor as there was a strong flow, combined with wind, at the location. The vessel had sustained damage to its propellers and drive, but was not holed.

With an RNLI crew member on board, the lifeboat took the casualty vessel under tow and made way back to the main navigation channel. The lifeboat towed the vessel to Shamrock Marina at Banagher, the closest safe harbour and where the vessel had a mooring. At 4pm it was safely tied alongside.

The lifeboat returned to Station and was ready for service again at 5.15pm.

Peter Kennedy, Deputy Launching Authority at Lough Derg Lifeboat Station, advises boat owners to ‘carry lifejackets on board, sufficient for every passenger’. He also advises boat users to ‘carry up to date charts and to familiarise yourselves with the buoyage on the Shannon’.

Ends

RNLI media contacts

For more information please contact Eleanor Hooker, Lough Derg RNLI Volunteer Lifeboat Press Officer on 0877535207, email lnrhooker@gmail.com or contact Nuala McAloon RNLI Press Officer Ireland on 0876483547 or email Nuala_McAloon@rnli.org.uk or Niamh Stephenson RNLI Public Relations Manager Ireland on 0871254124 or 018900460 or email Niamh_Stephenson@rnli.org.uk

RNLI/Lough Derg

Lough Derg RNLI

Key facts about the RNLI

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution is the charity that saves lives at sea. Our volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service in the United Kingdom and Ireland from 238 lifeboat stations, including four along the River Thames and inland lifeboat stations at Loch Ness, Lough Derg, Enniskillen and Lough Ree. Additionally the RNLI has more than 1,000 lifeguards on over 240 beaches around the UK and operates a specialist flood rescue team, which can respond anywhere across the UK and Ireland when inland flooding puts lives at risk.

The RNLI relies on public donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. As a charity it is separate from, but works alongside, government-controlled and funded coastguard services. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824 our lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved at least 140,000 lives. Volunteers make up 95% of the charity, including 4,600 volunteer lifeboat crew members and 3,000 volunteer shore crew. Additionally, tens of thousands of other dedicated volunteers raise funds and awareness, give safety advice, and help in our museums, shops and offices.

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The RNLI is a charity registered in England and Wales (209603) and Scotland (SC037736). Charity number 20003326 in the Republic of Ireland

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