Arklow RNLI heroically responded to two call-outs in one night on a stormy December 3rd and the early hours of the 4th.
Arklow RNLI received a pager alert at 7.40pm on December 3rd, a stormy evening with incredibly challening sea conditions, to rescue a 75 foot fishing trawler that had lost power and was being towed by another vessel.
Despite the challening conditions, the brave team at Arklow RNLI made their way 8 miles off the coast of Arklow to the position of the casualty vessel, where they evaluated the situation and eventually took over the tow of the vessel.
The lifeboat slowly and carefully towed the vessel back to Arklow in the heavy wind and rain, but the tow was broken when a violent wave hit them and the team had to act fast.
With the possible danger of the fishing vessel being blown onto the South Pier, the RNLI team navigated the potentially dangerous situation with speed and efficiency, re-establishing the tow before any damage could be done. They then safely returned the ship and its crew to safety.
The crew for this callout were, Coxswain Ned Dillon, Brendan Dillon, Eddie McElheron, James Russell, Craig O’Reilly and John Tyrrell.
However, the team were hardly back in their beds before they received yet another pager alert at 1.20AM, reporting that two men were in the water at Arklow Harbour.
The lifeboat relaunched in the minutes.
Local Gardai, Fire and Ambulance teams had also been alerted and arrived on scene. The casualties were located between two 24 metre workboats.
Many attempts were made to get the men to the shore, but both casualties were heavily exhausted and freezing due to their time spent in the water, and two lifeboat members had to enter the water in order to extract them safely.
One by one the crew members slowly manged to get a lifting sling around the casualties and they were then safely hoisted out of the water by the fire service. They were then handed over to the ambulance crews waiting on scene.
Following the callouts, Ned Dillon, Coxswain of Arklow Lifeboat said: “Huge thanks to all of our crew who turned up for this callout both afloat and onshore, this was an excellent service in extremely demanding and dangerous conditions and really shows the level of skills the crew have in achieving this positive out come in such trying circumstances, 7 lives and 1 fishing vessel saved on this night, the interagency training and exercising that we continue to do with the Gardai, Fire Service, Ambulance and Coast Guard service really pays off and helped make sure we got the right result this time , well done to all involved”