Friday 20 October 2017

Probe into safety beacon on tragic brothers' boat

Bolger brothers: Shane
Bolger brothers: Shane
Paul
Kenny
Ralph Riegel

Ralph Riegel

AN emergency safety beacon on the boat of three brothers who died in a fishing tragedy is one of six models now under investigation for potential faults.

The revelation came as the Bolger family, who lost Paul (49), Kenny (47) and Shane (44) Bolger in a lobster fishing accident on June 11, warned that "hard questions" need to be answered by the Marine Casualty Investigation Board (MCIB) report.

The family last night declined to comment on the tragedy that rocked the tight-knit fishing village of Passage East, Co Waterford, until after the full MCIB report is released.

The report is expected to be published within weeks.

A central element of the MCIB report will be whether the emergency beacon on the Bolgers' boat, called an Emergency Position Indication Radio Beacon (EPIRB), was operating correctly that day.

The EPIRB did not trigger the alert with the alarm, which was instead raised by the brothers' uncle, Joe Whitty.

The departments of the Marine and Transport have now urged fishermen and marine enthusiasts to check specific EPIRBs manufactured between 2005 and 2010 to ensure they are operating correctly.

The units in question are: MT400, MT401, MT406G, MT401FF, MT403/G and MT 403FF/FG. The Bolgers' beacon was an MT401 model.

Irish Independent

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