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Interior of Pere Charles trawler to be examined

AN examination of the interior of sunken trawler the Pere Charles is expected to take place today.

The 19m herring boat was dragged from Dunmore East in Waterford to Arklow yesterday.

It was placed in a secure holding area last night at the County Wicklow port.

A team from the Garda Water Unit will carry out a thorough inspection of the Pere Charles, while officials from the Marine Casualty Investigations Board will also examine the boat.

On Thursday, the Pere Charles was raised from the seabed, a little more than 3km off Hook Head where it sank on January 12th.

Relatives of the five men who drowned — skipper Tom Hennessy, his uncle Pat Hennessy, Billy O’Connor, Pat Coady, and Andriy Dyrin — visited the trawler’s wreck on Thursday evening and were shocked by the extent of the damage.

Hopes of finding any of the bodies of the men were all but dashed when the families saw how badly damaged the trawler was when it hit the seabed — upside down — in January.

Towed by the Muria tugboat, the Pere Charles left Dunmore East at about 10pm on Thursday and arrived in Arklow last night after completing the 74-mile journey around the south-east coast.

The tugboat then travelled back down to Dunmore.

It is expected to bring the Maggie B — which was raised from the seabed on Monday morning — to Arklow today or tomorrow.

The Maggie B sank in April of last year, causing the deaths of skipper Glynn Cott and crewman Jan Sankowski.

According to Irish Coast Guard operations manager Dave McMyler, the Garda search of the Pere Charles is expected to take between one and two hours.

A navy dive and search of the vessel already took place back in January, in the weeks after the trawler sank while on its way back to Dunmore East after a day’s fishing.

A preliminary inspection of the fishing vessel took place on Thursday after the boat was raised to the surface.