Friday 24 May 2019

Community 'shaken' as search resumes for missing swimmer in Galway

Kyle Ewald

A community in Galway is "shaken" as a search resumed today for a swimmer that failed to return to shore yesterday evening

The search for the missing man resumed at first light at Salthill.

Gardaí, the RNLI, two fire service units and the Irish Coast Guard conducted a major search operation yesterday evening, including sea-based searches and an aerial survey by the Irish Coast Guard helicopter R115.

The search was called off overnight, but was resumed this morning by volunteers from Costelloe Bay Coastguard, the Irish Coast Guard helipcopter R115 and Galway Bay RNLI.

The alarm was first raised by a member of the public at about 5pm yesterday evening. The swimmer is believed to a man in his forties from the Galway area.

Councillor Peter Keane of Galway City West told the incident "has shaken the community", but he commended the "incredibly quick" response by all emergency service units.

Cllr Keane said: "We don’t know exactly what happened to him... but I do know this is unusual."

"We have a fantastic community, with very safe waters for bathing and swimming. It has become quite popular to swim from Blackrock to Salthill, so it’s not unusual to see long-distance swimmers."

Cllr Keane also commended members of the public who monitored activity from the shore.

"There were so many concerned locals and members of the public out on the beach yesterday," he added.

"The community has been very shaken, everyone is hoping he is founds as soon as possible. My thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends."

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