Baltimore station 3rd busiest in Republic last year

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Published on: January 22, 2013

RNLI lifeboats in Ireland brought over 1,000 people to safety last year. Irish lifeboats from the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) launched 939 times in 2012 bringing 1,041 people to safety. The figures are being released by the charity following returns of service from all 44 lifeboat stations in Ireland.  The figures also show that the majority of callouts were to pleasure craft, which accounted for 482 of the callouts, while launches to fishing vessels were 115.

The busiest RNLI lifeboat station in Ireland last year was Bangor in county Down, which launched 53 times and rescued 53 people. Baltimore Lifeboat station was the 3rd busiest lifeboat station in the Republic of Ireland with 41 launches and rescuing 41 people,  The new Tamar class all weather lifeboat was launched 20 times rescuing 13 people while the Atlantic 75 inshore RIB launched 20 times rescuing 28 people.  27 of these rescue services were carried out in the hours of darkness. The Baltimore lifeboats spent over 758 hours at sea on these rescue services and another 283 on exercise preparing crews for what the next call might bring. The figures are significantly up on 2011 when lifeboats launched 22 times rescuing 33 people.

Other busy stations include Crosshaven RNLI in Cork where lifeboat crews launched their inshore lifeboat 42 times and rescued 31 people. The second Dublin all weather lifeboat station based in Howth, launched 40 times and rescued 48 people.

The charity’s lifeboat crews also had 122 callouts to people classed as ´ashore`.  This figure incorporates launches to people who are ill or injured on an island, cliff or the shoreline, where access by lifeboat is the fastest or safest way to reach the casualty. It also includes medical evacuations from the islands off the coast of Ireland by lifeboat, which is a vital part of the service given by lifeboat stations such as Cape Clear And Sherkin Islands.

RNLI Operations Manager for Ireland, Martyn Smith, says: ‘The figures show that our volunteers dedicate a huge amount of their time to saving lives at sea. To know that they are on call every day of the year is reassuring for all of us who venture out to sea and on loughs around Ireland.

‘While many callouts can be challenging, our volunteer lifeboat crews take the responsibility of bringing loved ones home very seriously.  As the figures show, last year they were able to do that for 1,041 people.  Not every callout is to save a life but the comfort and reassurance our volunteer crews bring to those in trouble is something the RNLI is very proud of and will continue to provide through the generosity of the public. I would like to say a huge “thank you” to all those who support the RNLI, whether by giving up their time or by making a donation.’

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