RNLI launch new lifeboat on Lough Derg

Dawn at Youghal Harbour on Lough DergDawn at Youghal Harbour on Lough Derg

The new RNLI lifeboat “Jean Spier” officially went on duty this week on Lough Derg. It was delivered last year. The crews were trained in its operation and were assessed to RNLI’s exacting standards.

Dromineer in Tippereary - the Lough Derg RNLI station is close by
Dromineer in Tipperary – the Lough Derg RNLI station is close by

Jean and her husband had wanted to put a lifeboat on the Shannon. In 2016 the Lough Derg lifeboat was to be replaced, and they said they would support it.

Sadly, Jean was not to see the mobilization of her dream. She sadly passed away in October 2017.

Lough Derg RNLI were very happy to get the new lifeboat. They named it after Jean. Their helm, press officer and writer Elanor Hooker wrote a verse in honour of the event.

The RNLI, Our Guardians, who we hope we never need

As we go on the water, the lifeboat is always in the back of our mind. It however is something we rarely think about. We hope we never need the RNLI. But we know its great to have them there when needed.

The lifeboat crews go out in all kinds of weather. They take their lives in their own hands to save others. Working as volunteers, their sense of public duty is alien in a lot of areas of modern society. R.N.L.I. volunteers are an example to us all.

The RNLI deserve our support.

Using the Water

When we use the water it is important to always plan ahead. There is an old saying is very true. It say that there is nothing as dangerous in boating as a tight schedule.

Always wear a lifejacket.

When bad weather and fading light are an incoming issue, set out on time to reach your destination while conditions are favourable.

Always make sure to have an anchor on the boat. As well as this, a good charge in your phone is essential in case its needed. Also VHF radio is always a good idea. Dont forget that external fuel tank that is full with fresh fuel is the best option to get you to your destination.

Fuel tanks built into a lot of boats are grand until they run out of fuel. If you refill, and then the engine refuses to restart, you can get into trouble quick. Strong currents can cause your boat to drift, or a strong wind can blow you towards danger.

Have snacks and drinking water on the boat. Always carry a first aid kit. A “dump bag” that is handy to grab in case of sinking is a good idea.

Always respect the water. With any luck, you will never need the RNLI. Such stories are boatpeoples tales you would rather not have to tell.

Rindoon Castle at St Johns Wood on Lough Ree, up the Shannon from Lough Derg

So, who are the RNLI?

The RNLI are a thirty two county body that also cover the United Kingdom. Thankfully there was no split in it after Irish independence. Also political pressure was applied to change its name. This was out of respect for the great work its volunteers do and past ones did regardless of personal or political background.

They operate on our rivers and seas . Founded in 1824, according to the vision of forward thinking Sir William Henry, they have developed to the service that we have today, with similar services operating globally.

About the Author

Thomas Carty
Thomas Carty is a Renmore resident, having moved to Galway for work a couple of years ago. Both his parents were originally from Ballinalee in Co. Longford but he grew up in Banagher and maintains his Offaly connections with membership of the poetry group Tullamore Rhymers Club. An amateur genealogist and historian, he writes on a range of topics that grab his interest. He works at security to pay the bills, and travels widely around Europe to keep sane!

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