Barra mourns

THE IS­LAND of Barra was shocked this week by the deaths of two divers in an accident off Castle­bay.

The Oban Times - - Front Page - SANDY NEIL sneil@oban­times.co.uk

TWO men who died af­ter a div­ing accident off the Isle of Barra on Satur­day have been named as Iain Ruairidh Mac­dougall of Castle­bay and Ryan McGuckin, who was from Falkirk but liv­ing in Lon­don.

The two shell­fish divers, who were both 39 years old, were div­ing in wa­ters near Castle­bay where they got into dif­fi­culty. Po­lice say they are not treat­ing their deaths as sus­pi­cious, and all next of kin have been in­formed.

At 11.20am Stornoway Coast­guard was con­tacted by a lo­cal ferry boat skip­per who had no­ticed two divers go into the wa­ter and not resur­face, leav­ing their small boat un­manned.

The RNLI Barra lifeboats were asked to search the area, along with the Coast­guard res­cue heli­copter based in Stornoway and Barra Coast­guard Res­cue Team.

At around 1pm Barra lifeboat re­ported to the Coast­guard that two ca­su­al­ties had been re­cov­ered from the wa­ter and taken to Barra hos­pi­tal. Later Po­lice Scot­land an­nounced that the two men had died in the in­ci­dent.

In­spec­tor Jane Ni­col­son said: ‘Our thoughts are with the fam­i­lies and friends of both Mr Mac­dougall and Mr McGuckin at this very dif­fi­cult time, as well as with the tight-knit com­mu­nity on Barra which has been deeply af­fected by this tragedy.

‘I would once again like to take the op­por­tu­nity to thank mem­bers of the pub­lic who as­sisted the emer­gency ser­vices on Satur­day.

‘Our in­quiries are con­tin­u­ing but there does not ap­pear to be any sus­pi­cious cir­cum­stances. A re­port will be sub­mit­ted to the procu­ra­tor fis­cal as is stan­dard in th­ese cases.’

Iain Ruairidh Mac­dougall, left, and Ryan McGuckin.

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