THE Irish Coast Guard and RNLI have cautioned that water-based activity on or in the sea should not take place while the current emergency restrictions are in place.
Both organisations are highlighting the importance of minimising the risk to Search and Rescue (SAR) volunteer crews, Helicopter crew and other front-line emergency services, through being unintentionally exposed to COVID-19.
RNLI and Coast Guard search and rescue services are fully operational but both organisations are urging everyone to follow Government instructions, which are clear – “stay home, protect frontline services and save lives”.
While you are allowed out for daily exercise, we do not recommend that this exercise is on, or in the sea and all travel restrictions must be observed. SAR services, including RNLI lifeboat service, Coast Guard helicopter services and Coast Guard units, are still available but every callout has the potential to put additional pressure on SAR services and other front-line emergency services as well as potentially exposing them to Covid-19.
Gareth Morrison, head of Water Safety at the RNLI, said, “We know people who live near the coast still want to exercise by the sea, but when you do this, please think of the potential impact of your actions on RNLI lifeboat volunteers and other emergency services”
Gerard O’Flynn from the Coast Guard said, “Please; stay home and stay back to stay safe. Observe the 2×2 rule, 2m physical distance and 2km travel distance”.