Updated: 10/04/18 : 17:09:01
Printable Version   Bookmark and Share Share This


Fishing boat victim airlifted by Sligo's Rescue 118 named

One man has died after the fishing boat he was on sank off the Mayo coast this afternoon.

The deceased - named locally as John Healy (57) - and two males in their 20s were on board the Aisling Patrick fishing boat when the vessel got into difficulty at around 12.30pm.

Both of the other crew members are in their 20s. The deceased man was declared dead at Sligo Universtity Hospital.

The three were crab fishing when it began to sink in waters 16 nautical miles northwest of Eagle Island.

It is understood the boat went down rapidly, with crew members only managing to make a broken mayday call, with partial co-ordinates, to the Coast Guard before they had to leave the vessel.

Fortunately, the Air Corps' Casa maritime patrol aircraft happened to be patrolling the area at the time and spotted the men on the life raft after they set off flares, he said.

"We were very lucky the Air Corps was in the area and they were rescued," a Coast Guard officer said.

"Whatever happened (causing the boat to sink), it happened very quickly."

The Sligo-based Coast Guard helicopter located the life raft at about 1.20pm. The crew were speedily airlifted to the Sligo hospital after rescuers winched them to safety aboard the helicopter

The other crew members were said to be recovering in hospital last night.

                    The capsized fishing boat - Aisling Patrick. Photo: Irish Air Corps

According to an Independent.ie report the the Marine Casualty Investigation Board has launched an investigation.

Local gardaí will also prepare a report for the local coroner, who will in turn establish a cause of death for Mr Healy.

Conditions at the time of the incident were cold and choppy.

Met Éireann issued a status yellow small craft warning at 10am yesterday, warning of north-easterly winds reaching force six at times yesterday afternoon, from Rossan Point in Co Donegal down to Roches Point in Co Cork.

There was a force five wind in the area at the time of the rescue, with a 3.5-metre sea swell, according to the Coast Guard.

Volunteers from the Ballyglass RNLI also responded to the emergency.