News and Events
|Posted on April 8, 2014 at 6:05 PM|
Aran Islands RNLI stand on their new pontoon. Photo: RNLI/Micheal Muldoon
Volunteer lifeboat crew with Aran Islands RNLI will be able to launch their all weather Severn Class lifeboat faster following the installation of a 24 metre pontoon, which will enable the lifeboat crew to board the lifeboat from a newly installed berth.
The new stable platform will also ensure that the transfer of casualties onto or from the lifeboat can be done easily and in comfort.
The 56 tonne structure measures 24 metres by 5 metres and is situated in the harbour between the new breakwater and the original pier. The enormous structure was transported to the island by ferry and carefully manoeuvred into place over a couple of weeks.
The work brings to completion a major building project on Inis Mór which has also seen a new lifeboat station built on the site of the old one, giving the volunteer lifeboat crew better facilities including a crew changing area and training room. It represents a significant investment by the charity for the island based lifeboat station, which has been in existence since 1927.
Speaking on the recent works RNLI Divisional Operations Manger Owen Medland said, ‘this development makes the operation of the Aran Islands lifeboat safer for the crew. Maintenance is easier with shore power and water close at hand. Also most importantly the transfer and handling of casualties can be done with minimum disruption and on the shore. It is also safer for the lifeboat crew who can be responding in the middle of the night and in all weathers to life and death situations. This new pontoon does away with the need of a boarding boat to transfer the crew out to the middle of the harbour to board the lifeboat. It has been a long wait but we are all delighted to finally see the Aran Island RNLI crew and support provided with the modern facilities.’
Aran Islands RNLI Coxswain John O’Donnell added, ‘This is a very welcome development for the lifeboat station and the whole community. Many of our callouts are medical evacuations and to have this new stable berth for the lifeboat means that a casualty can be safety moved with a minimum of discomfort. It will also shave a few minutes off our launch times which in some search and rescue situations can be vital.’
Categories: RNLI News