Mother and two daugh­ters are res­cued from cave

Bray People - - NEWS -

A MOTHER and her two young daugh­ters en­dured a ter­ri­fy­ing or­deal on Satur­day af­ter­noon after be­ing swept out into a cave at Sil­ver Strand.

The fam­ily were vis­it­ing Wick­low as day-trip­pers when two sis­ters, aged eight and 13, de­cided to go for a swim at Sil­ver Strand, south of Wick­low Head. One of the girls got into dif­fi­culty in the wa­ter and her sis­ter also ended up in trou­ble as she tried to help her.

When their mother no­ticed they were flail­ing in the wa­ter, she im­me­di­ately ran into the sea, fully clothed, to help her daugh­ters. Three other chil­dren be­long­ing to the fam­ily watched in hor­ror from the beach as their mother and two sib­lings were swept into a nearby cave.

The Wick­low RNLI in­shore lifeboat was launched at 4.40 p.m. and the Coast Guard was also alerted. The Dublin based Coast Guard Heli­copter Res­cue 116 ar­rived on scene and a winch-man from the heli­copter was landed on the beach to lo­cate the ca­su­al­ties.

The in­shore lifeboat ar­rived a short time later and Helm Graham Fitzger­ald spot­ted the three peo­ple in a cave.

Weather con­di­tions at the time were windy, southerly force 4 with high break­ing surf at the cave. Mr Fitzger­ald and the winch-man as­sessed the sit­u­a­tion and de­cided that rocks near to the cave en­trance would pre­vent the boat from get­ting too close. It was de­cided that the winch-

(Photo: Wick­low RNLI).

man would lead the ca­su­al­ties to an ad­join­ing cave which was more ac­ces­si­ble.

Once the ca­su­al­ties were in the other cave, the lifeboat crew brought the boat onto the beach and the three fe­male ca­su­al­ties were trans­ferred to the lifeboat along with the Coast Guard winch-man.

The winch-man, also a trained para­medic, ex­am­ined the three ca­su­al­ties while on­board the lifeboat and they were all trans­ported back to Wick­low Har­bour.

At Wick­low Lifeboat Sta­tion, the mother and daugh­ters were pro­vided with hot drinks to help them warm up. A good Sa­mar­i­tan liv­ing near the Sil­ver Strand looked after the three other chil­dren un­til they were later re­united with their mother and sis­ters.

Speak­ing after the call-out, Wick­low RNLI Lifeboat Op­er­a­tions Man­ager Des Davitt said: ‘ This was a good out­come to­day re­sult­ing in three peo­ple be­ing res­cued in a joint op­er­a­tion in­volv­ing Res­cue 116, Wick­low in­shore lifeboat and the lo­cal Coast Guard Shore unit, who lo­cated three other chil­dren from the group on the beach.’

Wick­low RNLI were in­volved in a sim­i­lar res­cue at Sil­ver Stand in 2014 when the lifeboat was called out to res­cue a woman who had been swept into a cave after get­ting into dif­fi­culty swim­ming. Two peo­ple who had tried to as­sist also had to be res­cued.

Res­cue 116 lands near the Black Castle on Satur­day

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