YESTERDAY’S tragedy in Kilkee, Co Clare, when a member of the Irish Coast Guard died after an accident that occurred during a search and rescue operation, is a reminder of the risks inherent in any journey on water, especially in difficult and dangerous weather conditions.
Three members of a coastguard unit based at Kilkee — two women and a man — were involved in a search for a missing man when their rigid inflatable boat (RIB) flipped over in a heavy swell as they searched sea cliffs near the resort town.
The loss of life underlines again the great risks volunteers expose themselves to when they offer to help in search and rescue missions.
It also highlights another point so often overlooked — when we take a risk for whatever reason we not only put our own lives in danger but we also jeopardise those who might be brave enough to try to rescue us from our own foolishness and bravado. Yesterday’s tragedy is a reminder that we are responsible not just for our own behaviour but for the risk it poses to others.
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