The Lough Derg RNLI lifeboat was called out to assist four people on a 35ft cruise boat that was reported to have run aground on the lake last night.
At 8.25pm watch officers at the Irish Coast Guard marine rescue sub centre on Valentia Island in Kerry activated the volunteer crew’s pagers and requested to assemble and launch.
A short time later the lifeboat launched with helm Eleanor Hooker and crew Owen Cavanagh, Keith Brennan and Chris Parker on board and proceeded towards Terryglass Bay.
It was nightfall, so crew used their on-board electronic navigation, RADAR, search lights, night vision binoculars and local knowledge as adjuncts to navigation. Winds were southwesterly, Force 4 gusting 5.
As the lifeboat approached Terryglass Bay, volunteer crew could see a flashing light signal ahead. The Coast Guard provided the lifeboat crew with a contact telephone number for the casualty vessel. When contacted, those aboard confirmed it was their boat emitting the light signal.
The lifeboat was alongside the casualty vessel at 9.06pm. All four people on board were safe and unharmed and wearing their lifejackets. An RNLI volunteer transferred to the casualty vessel. Once he was satisfied that the vessel was not holed, he set up for a tow.
The lifeboat took the cruiser off the rocks and out into safe water where drives and rudder were checked and found to be in good working order.
With an RNLI volunteer remaining on the casualty vessel with her four passengers, the cruiser followed the lifeboat across the bay into Terryglass Harbour, the safest closest harbour, where it was safely tied alongside at 10.08pm. The lifeboat departed the scene and was back at station at 10.50pm.
Christine O’Malley, Deputy Launching Authority at Lough Derg RNLI said afterwards: “We advise boat users to study their charts and for their safety, plan their passage so that they arrive at your destination before nightfall’.
The latest call was the second on Lough Derg for the Dromineer-based volunteer crew in as many days.