An investigation is under way into what caused a rowing boat to overturn, trapping a 12-year-old girl on the River Shannon in Limerick yesterday.

The girl was rowing along with three other teenage girls along a stretch of water near Thomond Weir north of Thomond Bridge at around 10am yesterday when the boat capsized.

A swiftwater craft operated by Limerick Fire Service was in the area and went quickly to the scene.

The 12-year-old was attended to by fire service personnel at the scene and by paramedics at the slipway at St St Michael’s Rowing Club.

She was taken to University Hospital Limerick before being transferred to Temple Street Children’s University Hospital in Dublin, where she is said to be in a serious condition.

Gardaí are investigating the incident and have asked the Marine Casualty Investigation board, which investigates water-based incidents, to also carry out an investigation.

Athlunkard Boat Club issued a statement saying that the teenagers were accompanied by a safety boat at the time of the incident.

"There was a serious incident on the river Shannon yesterday morning where four teenage girls and one teenage boy from our club were in a rowing boat that overturned.

"They were accompanied by one of our safety boats at the time. One of these girls was transferred to hospital following the incident. We are monitoring the situation and are in constant contact with the family and Rowing Ireland.  

"Our thoughts are now focused on supporting the family, the girls and boy who were in the boat at the time and our club members," said the club.