Two separate boating accidents led to the rescue of 10 men earlier this month in Ireland, including six anglers who spent over 40 minutes in the water before rescue crews arrived. According to the Evening Herald, the six men in that incident were participating in a weekend fishing trip nearly three miles off the coast in Dublin Bay. The group ranged in age from 20 to the mid-50s and included a father and son. Rescuers believed the ship capsized when the anglers were attempting to bring a fish on board and were hit by a wave. Luckily, one of the men was able to make a call to his girlfriend, who alerted the authorities.
“All six of the men were very, very cold and were in a bad way when rescued,” said Mark McGibney, coxswain of the local Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) rescue service. “They were in the water for at least 40 minutes and the temperature of the water was no more than 12 to 14 degrees [Celsius].”
The second accident involved four middle-aged men in Tramore Bay. Upon being hit by two large waves, their small boat also sunk. Unlike the party in Dublin Bay however, the group’s cellphones were all lost in the water. Judging the distance to shore to be quite close, one of the anglers decided to brave the swim in order to bring back help. His decision turned out to be the right one; the swim involved only 650 feet, or roughly the length of four back-to-back Olympic-sized swimming pools. RNLI crews rescued the remaining three men, although one was in serious condition and had to be airlifted to a nearby hospital.
Rescue workers attribute the anglers’ survival to the life-jackets worn by the men on both boats.
“If they had not, it would have been much more difficult to hang on for as long as they did,” said McGibney.