Clare pair to be honoured at water safety awards

Clare pair to be honoured at water safety awards


Photo: © Pat Flynn 2016
The scene of the incident in Ballyvaughan in August – Photo: © Pat Flynn 2016

A recently promoted garda sergeant and a businessman who rescued a man from drowning in Co Clare in August will be among almost 50 people who will be honoured at a special event in Dublin today.

A total of thirty-two lives were saved at home and abroad through the brave actions of forty-seven rescuers who will receive recognition at Irish Water Safety’s National Annual Awards Ceremony in Dublin Castle this afternoon.

Minister for Housing, Planning & Local Government Mr Simon Coveney will present the “Seiko Just In Time Rescue Award” as well as other awards to rescuers in appreciation for saving so many lives.

A total of 12 members of An Garda will also be recognised today for their efforts in effecting successful rescues in counties Dublin, Kildare, Wexford, Tipperary and Clare.

These include Sergeant John Casey who jumped into the sea from a pier in Co Clare, along with local businessman John McDonnell, to rescue a man trapped in his car.

Ballyvaughan businessman John McDonald who jumped into the sea to save the man - Photo: © Pat Flynn 2016
Ballyvaughan businessman John McDonald who jumped into the sea with Sgt Casey – Photo: © Pat Flynn 2016

On August 14th last, Sgt Casey and colleague Sgt Marie Crowley responded to a call at the Pier Road, Ballyvaughan.

Sgt Casey, who had only transferred to Ennistymon on promotion from Ennis the previous week, stripped down and jumped into the water to save the driver. Sgt Casey and Mr McDonnell managed to free the man from the car and recover him safely to the shore.

Eight other members of the force will receive Rescue Appreciation Awards after they rescued a woman from the River Shannon in Athlone in 2015. 

Representatives from the Irish Naval Service will also receive rescue awards for saving thousands of migrants in the Mediterranean whilst on humanitarian missions.

Long-Service Awards will also be presented, recognising 1,510 years of personal service of 82 Irish Water Safety volunteers for teaching swimming, rescue and water survival skills in communities nationwide.