By Patrick Flynn
Three men were rescued last night after a currach was reported missing off the Aran Islands.
The alarm was raised at around 10pm when three men were spotted in a currach between the two smaller islands, Inishmaan and Inisheer.
The boat could be seen by onlookers from the shoreline who reported the men to be in a "disoriented" state.
Visibility in the area was also reported to be poor with eyewitnesses losing sight of the boat for a time because of thick fog.
The Aran Islands RNLI lifeboat was launched to search for the 30ft boat while the Doolin unit of the Irish Coast Guard and Shannon-based search and rescue helicopter were also requested to assist.
The lifeboat located the boat in Foul Sound between the two islands and took the three men on board.
It is understood the men had been socialising and may have been trying to make their way between islands.
They were taken to the mainland at Rosaveel where they were met by Gardaí but not detained.
The Doolin rescue boat took the currach on tow to Kilronan on Inishmore.
Gardaí in Galway are investigating the circumstances of the incident.