Friday, 3.15pm – Civil Defence volunteers have completed a search of the River Fergus from Ennis to Clarecastle with no trace of the missing man being found. Search teams launched two boats from a slipway at Clareabbey near Clarecastle. Volunteers travelled up and down the river as part of their search effort however the operation was stood down at around 3.00pm.
The search effort will resume at 9.00am tomorrow when Civil Defence volunteers will be joined by divers from Ennis, Burren, Lough Derg and Kilkee Sub Aqua Clubs.
Friday, 10.55am – The River Fergus remains very swollen and fast-flowing this morning making a search efforts difficult.
Clare Civil Defence volunteers, including water search teams, have recommenced the search for the missing man. The team has launched two rescue boats south of the town at Clareabbey and will carry out a search of the river and riverbanks upstream towards Ennis.
A search is due to resume this morning for a person reported to have entered the River Fergus in Ennis late last night.
The alarm was raised shortly after 11.00pm when Gardaí observed a male at a bridge in the town centre.
It’s understood the man entered the river and that Gardaí deployed life-buoys in an effort to rescue him. Despite the best efforts of Gardaí, the man was quickly taken downstream in the strong current. The River Fergus is currently quite high and fast moving following recent heavy rain in the county.
A major multi-agency search and rescue operation was quickly mounted.
Units of Clare County Fire and Rescue Service from Ennis station were mobilised including specially trained swift water rescue technicians (SRTs). The National Ambulance Service also dispatched paramedics and a rapid response advanced paramedic unit.
The Irish Coast Guard was notified and the Shannon-based search and rescue helicopter was tasked. Clare Civil Defence was also requested to mobilise resources including their water rescue team. Volunteers from the Doolin unit of the Irish Coast Guard were also mobilised to the incident.
The fire service deployed their inflatable rescue boat and commenced a search close to where the man was last seen. The boat team them moved down river in search of the man. Clare Civil Defence also launched a boat and carried out a comprehensive search of the river.
The crew of Rescue 115 used the helicopter’s powerful search lights to scour the river for any trace of the man.
Three hours after the search was first mounted the search operation was stood down.
Clare Civil Defence volunteers are due to resume a search of the river early this morning.