Wednesday 21 March 2018

Emergency services attacked as they tried to save life of man in drowning tragedy

Discarded beer bottles leading to the water's edge at the scene of yesterday's drowning after a party went tragically wrong.
Discarded beer bottles leading to the water's edge at the scene of yesterday's drowning after a party went tragically wrong.

Niall O’Connor

EMERGENCY services came under attack as they tried to save the life of a 21-year-old man in a swimming tragedy in the early hours of this morning.

Two arrests were made by gardai when coastguard, fire service and ambulance crews were targeted. The man has been named locally as Michael O’Driscoll (21) of Model Farm Road, Cork.

A gang of youths, apparently from Cork city, had gone to the reservoir at Inniscarra approximately 15 miles from the city yesterday.

It is understood that some of the group had been drinking and a number of them, including the deceased, entered the water.

At midnight, the man experienced difficulty and members of the group raised the alarm.

When emergency services arrived a number of people attacked the crews by throwing bottles and stones at them.

A large garda presence was required to protect rescuers as they tried to find Mr O’Driscoll.

His body was recovered an hour later at 1am and ambulance crews attempted to resuscitate the man.

The deceased was taken to Cork University Hospital when he was pronounced dead at the Accident and Emergency department.

“Rescuers came under attack at the scene – there was a lot of drunken people and some of they attacked the crews as they tried to save the man.

“Vehicles were damaged and it took a bit of time to bring the situation under control,” said a source.

In a separate incident yesterday evening on the Cork/Kerry border, a talented teenage GAA player drowned.

Chris O’Sullivan (17) attended a club barbeque at a house near Lisheen Bridge Bathing spot near Rathmore, County Kerry.

According to local sources, Chris dived into a four metre deep pool in the River Blackwater but failed to surface.

His friends ran to the nearby house to raise the alarm.

People ran to the pool and after a frantic 20 minute search they pulled the young man’s body from the river.

Three ambulance crews attended the scene and an Air Corps air ambulance was called to transport his near lifeless body to Tralee General Hospital.

Doctors fought to save his life but he lost his fight for life late last night.

Chris was a talented GAA player and played minor for the Rathmore GAA team.

The club had tweeted of their “devastation”.

Garda enquiries are ongoing into the incident but local gardaí said there was no alcohol involved in the second incident.

Separately, it was a busy day for emergency services across the country.

A man and woman had to be rescued off the rocks at Bullock Harbour, Dublin in two separate incidents.

The man, aged in his 70s, was airlifted from rocks at the popular harbour yesterday after falling and suffering a suspected broken leg.

He was flown to Tallaght hospital.

In the second incident, a woman was also injured at the same location.

She was rescued by members of Dublin Fire Brigade.

Separately, a man was airlifted to hospital last night after swimming the Malahide Estuary.

Three men swam the estuary and one of them became “very sick” following the swim.

He was brought to Tallaght hospital.

Kerry mountain rescue were assisted by a coastguard helicopter in a rescue of a female mountain walker at Torc Mountain in Kerry.

Two youths were also rescued drifting in a dinghy off Kinsale, Co Cork.

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