18th December

Fishermen join forces to search for R116 crewmen

 

 

KFO IFPO

The Killybegs Fishermen's Organisation and the Irish Fish Producers Organsations are continuing to search for the missing crew of Irish Coast Guard helicopter R116, Paul Ormsby and Ciarán Smith, by organisating a coordinated search of Donegal Bay this weekend (April 8-9).

Read more: Fishermen join forces to search for R116 crewmen

Wreckage of Coast Guard R116 'positively located'

Following initial Remote Operated Vehicle (ROV) operations, wreckage of Coast Guard helicoper R116 has been positively located on the seabed, east of Blackrock at a depth of approximately 40m.

Blackrock MB data

INFOMAR multibeam data of waters surveyed around Blackrock Island, Co Mayo

Read more: Wreckage of Coast Guard R116 'positively located'

Wreckage from Coast Guard helicopter 'consistent' with hard surface impact

Investigators from the Air Accident Investigation Unit (AAIU) have confirmed that wreckage from Coast Guard helicopter R116 shows impact ‘consistent with the tail of the aircraft contacting rocky surfaces’.

Blackrock Island

Blackrock Island, 13km off the Mayo coast

It is believed the Sikorsky S-92 stuck rocks on the western end of Blackrock Island, 13km off the Mayo coast. The exact nature of the damage and the circumstances of the accident remain unknown.

Capt Dara Fitzpatrick’s body was recovered shortly after the incident late on Monday March 13. Her colleagues, pilot Mark Duffy and winchmen Ciarán Smith and Paul Ormsby are still missing.

Read more: Wreckage from Coast Guard helicopter 'consistent' with hard surface impact

Appeal against cruise berth development centres on environmental impact

Save our Seafront, the environmental non-governmental organisation that has been active in the protection and promotion of Dublin Bay for over 12 years, was granted leave (Jan 5) to seek a Judicial Review of An Bord Pleanála’s planning permission for a cruise ship berth and associated works at Dún Laogahire Harbour.

DLHC Judicial Review Star Legend

Star Legend, carrying 208 passengers and 164 crew,  will visit Dún Laoghaire on June 26

The appeal centres on the Environmental Impact Study and the Natura Impact Statement and the application as a whole, which was ‘inadequate and fails adequately, or at all, to capture the environmental effects of the proposed development on the environment’ the NGO contends.

Read more: Appeal against cruise berth development centres on environmental impact

Coast Guard 2016 statistics

Use of Personal Locator Beacons (PLBs) and Electronic Position Indicating Radio Beacons (EPIRBs) were responsible for directly saving the lives of five mariners in 2016, according to the Coast Guard.

Coast Guard

Coast Guard demonstration at Leenane, Co Galway                                                         Photo Gillian Mills

One of these incidents related to a Coast Guard helicopter rescue of a lone yachtsman, whose yacht had overturned 20 miles south of Co Wexford. A second related to the location and recovery of three fishermen whose vessel had sunk. The third incident concerned the location of a single crewed yacht that had become dismasted off the SW Coast and was subsequently towed to Castletownbere, Co Cork.

Read more: Coast Guard 2016 statistics

Calls to upgrade the Coast Guard

Irish Examiner (12/16)

Christy Parker

'Search and rescue volunteers in the Coast Guard are calling on the government to upgrade the service to a ‘standalone primary response agency’.

They warn the service is constantly under threat, primarily due to political manoeuvring and not getting the recognition deserved at departmental levels.

ISC Leenane

Coast Guard demonstration at Leenane, Co Galway                                                            Photo G Mills

Volunteers claim the Coast Guard is the only one of the State’s ‘blue light’ services — An Garda, ambulance and fire service — not covered by Statutory Instrument legislation which ensures standalone status.

Read more: Calls to upgrade the Coast Guard

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