Mayo 02/11/2013

  • Search for missing hill-walker. 02/11/2013
  • Mayo Mountain Rescue Team (MRT) and An Garda Síochána co-ordinated a large scale, multi day, multi-agency search for a missing hill-walker on Connacht’s highest mountain Mweelrea. Along with family, friends, local farmers, National Park Staff, fellow members of his walking club (Irish Mountaineering Club) and members of the general hill-walking community assisted with the search over several days.
  • As part of the escalation process Mayo MRT requested assistance from the rest of the Irish Mountain Rescue Teams across the country and the Irish Cave Rescue Organisation (ICRO) to assist with the search. 
  • As the teams from all over the country headed to Co Mayo, assistance was given by the Irish Air Corp who aided in the night time transportation of members of the South Eastern Mountain Rescue Association by helicopter from Waterford airport into the area.
  • Search and Rescue Dogs Association (SARDA) and members of the Garda Dog Unit were also deployed.
  • 6 members of Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team (CVSRT) travelled from North Yorkshire to aid in the search. To maximise their stay and time available to search, CVSRT flew into Knock Airport early Saturday morning and arranged to get the Stena Line Ferries from Dublin Port back late on Sunday evening. On hearing the reason for the team member’s travel, Stena Line Ferries waivered the cost and arranged to supply the searchers with two cabins for what was to be anticipated as much needed rest.
  • The Irish Coast Guard’s rescue helicopter call-sign Rescue 118 conducted a number of aerial searches over several days. Members of the local Cleggan Coast Guard Team assisted with the mountain search and Westport Coast Guard boat was tasked to search the area of Doo Lough.
  • K2 Adventure Centre supplied a boat that was utilised to help with deployment of Mountain Rescue personnel onto the mountain from Killary Harbour.
  • The Civil Defence supplied transport for the search parties to be deployed into their search areas on Saturday.
  • The local community responded and local business Castlecourt Hotel, Hotel Westport, Hudsons Pantry and Portfin Lodge who kindly donated food and supplies to aid in the overall search effort.
  • Ordnance Survey Ireland in Dublin supplied large scale map and aerial photography of Mweelrea Mountain to assist with search planning.
  • A key part for any large scale search is to have appropriate facilities to run a search base from.
  • Mountain Rescue Ireland would like to extend our appreciation to Delphi Adventure Centre who ensured that the search effort wanted for nothing. Besides housing the search base, they supplied accommodation for those who required it, provided breakfast, packed lunches and hot dinner for when the searchers returned off the mountain. Search conditions on Saturday were hampered by deteriorating weather, strong gusts, heavy rain downpours and low cloud.
  • At approximately mid-day on Saturday members of a Mayo Mountain Rescue Team search party found the body of the missing hill-walker.
  • Mountain Rescue Ireland would like to extend our sincere condolences to his family and friends.

Mountain Rescue Ireland would like to thank the following MR Teams / Agencies / Organisations and Businesses:
Donegal Mountain Rescue Team 
Dublin-Wicklow Mountain Rescue Team
Galway Mountain Rescue Team
Glen of Imaal Red Cross Mountain Rescue Team
Kerry Mountain Rescue Team
Mayo Mountain Rescue Team
Mourne Mountain Rescue Team
North-West Mountain Rescue Team
Search and Rescue Dogs Association
South Eastern Mountain Rescue Association
Sligo/Leitrim Red Cross Mountain Rescue Team
Tramore Cliff & Mountain Rescue Association
Irish Cave Rescue Organisation
Calder Valley Search and Rescue Team

Irish Mountaineering Club
An Garda Síochána
Irish Coast Guard
Irish Air Corp
Ordnance Survey Ireland
Civil Defence 
National Park Staff

K2 Adventure Centre
Delphi Adventure Centre
Castlecourt Hotel
Hotel Westport
Hudsons Pantry
Portfin Lodge