35 people rescued following bad weather at Lough Derg rowing event

Saturday 22 June 2013 11.50
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All rescue services in the area were dispatched (pic Liam Burke)
All rescue services in the area were dispatched (pic Liam Burke)
Boats were dispersed by heavy rain and wind (pic Liam Burke)
Boats were dispersed by heavy rain and wind (pic Liam Burke)

35 people have been rescued from Lough Derg after bad weather disrupted an international rowing event.

18 vessels with five people on each were racing on the Shannon from Dromineer to Killaloe.

However the boats were dispersed by heavy rain and wind and several were forced off course.

The Coast Guard, RNLI, gardaí, National Ambulance Service, Fire Services, Civil Defence, ShannonDoc, and Limerick Marine Search and Rescue were all involved in the operation.

Three ambulances were dispatched to the scene and three emergency response cars.

A further three emergency ambulances were dispatched but stood down when it was determined they were not required.

35 people were rescued from the water by the water rescue agencies.

15 rowers suffering from hypothermia were treated at the scene by paramedics and three local general practitioners.

No one required admittance to hospital.

There had been concerns about one of the participating boats which was subsequently located safely ashore along with its oars and equipment.

Chief Medical Officer for the National Ambulance Service Dr Cathal O'Donnell said: "This was an extremely successful inter-agency operation and a job well done by all involved.

“All of the rowers were brought to safety and no one is seriously hurt."