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Lifeboat assists 10 people in weekend incidents

TEN people were assisted by Lough Derg RNLI lifeboat volunteers over the weekend in two separate incidents where cruise boats were reported to have run aground on the lake.
On Sunday Valentia Coast Guard requested Lough Derg RNLI lifeboat to launch to assist seven people on a 45ft cruiser. At 1.35pm the lifeboat Jean Spier launched with helm Owen Cavanagh, crew Steve Smyth, Tom Hayes and Michael O’Sullivan on board.
While en route to the stricken vessel, Valentia reported a further three people in need of assistance on a separate 30ft cruiser.
At 2.08pm the lifeboat had the initial casualty vessel in sight; aground on a shoal near Navigation Mark G on the Tipperary shore. Marine engineers from the cruise hire company arrived on scene at the same time. The lifeboat remained on standby until the engineers had the cruiser off the shoal and the scene was safe.
At 2.30pm the lifeboat departed to assist the three people on the second vessel aground and they arrived at the scene 15 minutes later.
The 30ft vessel was aground off the Goat Road, a raised shoal for migrating birds. The lifeboat found all three people to be safe and unharmed and wearing their lifejackets. The lifeboat transferred two RNLI volunteers across to the casualty vessel, who reported back that the vessel was not holed.
Given the weather conditions, the RNLI helm decided that the safest course of action was to take the cruiser off the rocks and out into safe water.
At 2.52pm the lifeboat had the cruiser off the shoal and out into safe water, where the drives and rudder were found to be in good working order.
The RNLI volunteers transferred back to the lifeboat and the cruiser continued its passage under its own power. At 3.08pm the lifeboat departed the scene and was back at Station at 3:24pm
Christine O’Malley, Lifeboat Operations Manager at Lough Derg RNLI, advises water users unfamiliar with Lough Derg to, “plan your passage and keep a lookout for the next navigation mark on your route. Plan your course to arrive at safe harbour before nightfall.”

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