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Dublin: 7 °C Friday 18 October, 2019

Search for two remaining Rescue 116 crewmen to resume today

Garda divers will be on hand to conduct dives as they are needed.

Image: Eamonn Farrell/

AN UNDERWATER SEARCH around Blackrock lighthouse in Mayo for the missing crew of Rescue 116 will resume today after weather forced a postponement over the weekend.

The Coast Guard helicopter went down in March.

Captain Dara Fitzpatrick was recovered at sea soon after the helicopter went down, but died later in hospital. The body of pilot Mark Duffy was found in the wreckage of the helicopter some weeks later.

The bodies of winch operator Paul Ormsby (53) and winchman Ciarán Smith (38) have yet to be recovered.

While searches went on for a number of weeks after the crash, it is understood that more favourable sea conditions will mean that a fresh survey of the area around Blackrock island, where the helicopter crashed, will be possible this weekend.

A Killybegs-based trawler, the MFV Westbound, will trawl the seabed for any sign of debris around the island.

Garda divers will be on hand to conduct dives as they are needed.

Last week, RTÉ’s Prime Time programme revealed that a pilot had raised concerns four years ago that Blackrock island off Mayo was not on the onboard warning systems that Coast Guard search and rescue teams use, but no action was taken.

Read: Pilot flagged concerns that island was not on mapping system 4 years before Rescue 116 crash

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