Killaloe Coast Guard involved in Shannon rescue

Killaloe Coast Guard involved in Shannon rescue

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Members of Killaloe Coast Guard responded to the incident - File Photo: © Pat Flynn 2015
Members of Killaloe Coast Guard responded to the incident – File Photo: © Pat Flynn 2015

One man is in a critical condition in hospital while three others are also being treated after their boat capsized in Limerick early today. 

The aluminium crafted rolled onto its side and became swamped by the fast flowing waters of the River Shannon at around 4.25am. One of the men managed to raise the alarm.

The Killaloe unit of the Irish Coast Guard along with Limerick City Fire and Rescue service responded to the incident at World’s End in Castleconnell.

Rescuers quickly located the capsized craft near the popular fishing area. It’s understood that the boat got caught in the current and overturned trapping the men inside.

It’s understood two of the casualties were trapped beneath the boat which had come to rest in debris left by the recent storms.

The Shannon based search and rescue helicopter was also scrambled to assist in the search. The crew was told there were four people in the water but that only one was visible at the time.

Photo: © Pat Flynn 2015
Photo: © Pat Flynn 2015

Two swiftwater rescue technicians (SRT’s) from Limerick Fire and Rescue Service entered the river from the shoreline while Killaloe Coast Guard personnel launched their rescue boat.

The operation to recover all four casualties ended at around 7am when the last man was finally released. He is now believed to be in a critical condition in hospital.

All four casualties were taken to University Hospital Limerick for treatment.

The multi-agency rescue operation involved the the fire service, An Garda, HSE National Ambulance Service, Limerick Marine Search and Rescue, the Irish Coast Guard (Killaloe) and search and rescue helicopter Rescue 115.

Killaloe Coast Guard officer in charge (OIC) Joe Doolan said: “This was an excellent example of the how all the agencies worked together particularly in such trying conditions. It was a difficult rescue but all four casualties were rescued and hopefully they will all recover.”

“We are also very grateful to the ESB who reduced the flow of water in the river so that we could work to free the casualties,” Mr Doolan added.

River Shannon at Doonass. Photo: © Pat Flynn 2015
The ESB reduced the water flow on the river to facilitate the rescue operation – Photo: © Pat Flynn 2015

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Chief Reporter Pat Flynn has worked as a journalist for almost 30 years. His career began during the late 1980s when, like many aspiring radio presenters of the time, he worked for local pirate radio stations in Clare and Limerick. Pat joined Clare FM in 1990 where he worked as researcher initially and later presented several different programmes including the station's flagship current affairs programme. He was also the station's News Editor and Deputy Controller of Programmes. Despite leaving in 2003 to pursue a career as a freelance journalist, he continues to work with the station to this day. As well as being the Clare Herald’s Chief Reporter Pat is also freelance journalist and broadcaster, contributing to Ireland’s national newspapers and is a regular contributor to national broadcasters.

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