The Irish Government have recently decided to remove the 24hr search and rescue helicopter cover in the south east… they have planned to downgrade the service to daylight hours only, so I guess the Government believe its ‘tough sh1t’ if you get into trouble after dark!
Apparently these cuts will save €1 million in the year… but how many lives might be lost?
More info on the proposed cuts is detailed in an article on the RTE Website.
This is a controversial topic making the headlines on a few Irish surfing forums… and a page on Facebook against the proposed cuts has gathered over 20,000 members.
Search & Rescue helicopter bases in Dublin, Shannon and Sligo are to remain 24hr. According to the Facebook petition page the Waterford base has statistically proven to have responded to more callouts than the Dublin helicopter base in the past 12 months.
If you feel strongly against this you can sign a Petition which will be sent to the Minister of Transport, I’m one of the many who have already signed.