posted on May 04, 2011 16:45
A man walking on Sandymount beach this evening had a lucky escape when he became cut-off by the incoming tide and was rescued by the new RNLI inshore lifeboat from Dun Laoghaire.
The incident occurred shortly after 10pm when the man was walking on a sandbank approximately one mile from Strand Road in Sandymount when he became aware that he was cut-off by the rising flood tide. The Irish Coastguard service that co-ordinates marine rescue received a phone call from the casualty and the inshore lifeboat was launched at 10.20pm.
A search involving Gardai and coastguard shore units was already underway and the ILB began combing the area with the assistance of searchlights and white parachute flares. The casualty relayed his position to the ILB crew via the Dublin Coastguard radio service and was located within 20 minutes.
The ILB crew took the casualty on board and brought him to Dun Laoghaire one hour after the call-out. He was unhurt in the incident and did not require hospital attention.
The new inshore lifeboat was named "Realt Na Mara" by broadcaster Pat Kenny and his wife Cathy at a ceremony last Saturday. The €35,000 craft was donated privately and this evening's call was the second today. Earlier, four people on a small powerboat got into difficulties off Bulloch Harbour in Dalkey.
Tonight's incident is not an infrequent occurrence as the sandbanks on Sandymount Strand have tricked other walkers in the past as the incoming tide floods the lower-lying beach area closer to the shore and depths become impossible to walk, especially in surf.
"The casualty was very lucky to escape injury or worse," commented Stephen Wynne, Lifeboat Operations Manager at Dun Laoghaire RNLI. "There was less than two hours remaining before high-water but at that stage the sandbank would have been completely covered. Sea-temperatures on the East Coast are still less than ten degrees and the chances of survival would have been slim."