A search and rescue operation was mounted in the Shannon Estuary this afternoon after two kayakers were reported to be in difficulty.
The alarm was raised shortly after 6.00pm when the Irish Coast Guard received reports of kayakers in apparent trouble between Beale beach and Letter beach in North Kerry.
The operation was mounted and coordinated by watch officers at the Irish Coast Guard’s marine rescue sub centre on Valentia Island in Kerry. Staff there also issued a radio message to any vessels in the vicinity to provide assistance if they were in a position to do so.
The Kilrush RNLI lifeboat, based at Cappagh in Co Clare, was tasked to the scene along with the Irish Coast Guard helicopter, Rescue 115. The Ballybunion Coast Guard unit was also requested to respond to the incident.
The lifeboat arrived at the scene at around 6.30pm and quickly located the two kayakers. One of the men was in the water and unable to climb back into his kayak. Lifeboat members assisted him back into his kayak and remained with the pair until they were safely ashore near Letter beach.
The kayakers were met on the shore by Ballybunion Coast Guard volunteers. When it was confirmed the kayakers were unharmed and not in need of further medical attention, the helicopter was stood down.
It’s understood that both men were ‘well equipped’ and had personal flotation devices and a mobile phone for communications.
Today’s was the second call in two days for the Kilrush RNLI lifeboat crew.