Crew member airlifted from trawler by Rescue 115

Crew member airlifted from trawler by Rescue 115

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Rescue 115 arriving back at Shannon Airport this afternoon – Photo: © Pat Flynn 2017

A Spanish fisherman is being treated in hospital after he was airlifted from a trawler in the North Atlantic this afternoon.

The long-range medical evacuation (medevac) mission involved the Irish Coast Guard and Irish Air Corps.

The crew member, believed to be in his 50’s, had complained of feeling unwell earlier today. The trawler’s skipper raised the alarm at around 1.00pm.

Watch officers at the Irish Coast Guard’s marine rescue sub centre on Valentia Island in Kerry tasked the Shannon based search and rescue helicopter – Rescue 115.

The crew had to fly almost 300 kilometres west from their base to rendezvous with the Spanish registered fishing vessel.

An Irish Air Corps CASA maritime patrol aircraft was also requested to assist in the operation by providing top-cover communications support.

A Coast Guard paramedic was winched onto the deck of the trawler where he assessed and stabilised the patient. The man was then winched on board the the helicopter and flown to Shannon Airport.

Rescue 115 landed in Shannon at 4.15pm almost three hours after first setting off on the mission.

The patient was handed over to National Ambulance Service paramedics at Shannon and transported to University Hospital Limerick for treatment.

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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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