The Coast Guard is requesting members of the public planning on engaging in any coastal activities over the Christmas period to first check that it is safe to do so and to be mindful of the risks and life threatening dangers that can arise without warning.
Many people will be engaging in outdoor activities along the coastline, be it on exposed coasts, cliffs, piers, harbour walls, beaches, promenades or other coastal areas.
The simple safety message from the Coast Guard is, “Stay back, stay high, stay dry.
Storm Barbara, which will give rise to stormy conditions, is forecasted to blow through today (Friday) and there is a risk of some stormy weather returning on Christmas Day. A general improvement in weather conditions conducive to outdoor activities, is forecast from St Stephen’s Day. Spring tides that generate higher tides, peak in the latter part of the week and pose an additional risk.
Christmas Day swims are a popular pursuit and the Coast Guard is urging the public to only participate in organised swims where medical support and lifeguards are available. Lone swimming should be avoided and all swimmers should be cognisant that time in the water should be kept to a minimum as even the most experienced of swimmers can easily succumb to cramp or cold water shock.
The three Coast Guard Rescue Coordination Centres based in Malin, Valentia and Dublin, along with the Coast Guard Helicopter service [including Shannon] and Coast Guard Volunteer units will remain operational over the holiday period.
The Coast Guard wishes to remind the public that if you see anybody in danger at sea, on the coast or on cliffs to call 112 and ask for the Coast Guard.