Ballyglass RNLI recover barge that left Canada seven months ago

An RNLI crewmember on board the barge. Picture: RNLI

A lifeboat crew at Ballyglass RNLI was launched on Monday to recover a barge that had broken away from its moorings in Labrador, Newfoundland in Canada last November.

The crew received a call on Monday evening at 7.20pm saying the 26-metre long boat had been spotted by a fishing vessel.

The Coast Guard informed the RNLI crew that the structure had broken free from its moorings in Canada, over 3,080km away, last November before being sighted locally that evening.

It took the crew seven hours to secure the barge and bring it safely to Ballyglass, Co Mayo.

The lifeboat crew established a tow and brought the barge back to Ballyglass harbour.

Picture: RNLI

It was put on the lifeboat mooring before a more permanent solution could be found as there was no room to berth it safely in the harbour.

"We were not expecting this type of callout at all," said Padraic Sheeran. Ballyglass RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager.

You do hear of vessels and craft breaking free of moorings but it’s unusual to have one drift thousands of kilometres and have to be rescued by lifeboat.

"On a serious note though, it represented a major navigational danger to any vessel that it collided with and it was a relief to have it safely recovered."

- Digital Desk

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