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Spanish Point - the two bodies were found off the coastline of the Co Clare village. Mark Waters via Creative Commons

Two bodies found in Clare coast search

Small boat had been reported missing last night when it failed to return to Quilty. Bodies of two men were found after midday today.

TWO BODIES HAVE been found in a search which began when a small fishing boat failed to return to port in Clare yesterday.

The two bodies were found shortly after midday just off the Clare coast at Spanish Point today. A spokesperson for the Irish Coast Guard said that the Lady Eileen, a small 28-foot boat, had been out lobster fishing but had failed to return to Quilty harbour yesterday evening.

A search was launched and debris and a strong smell of diesel was discovered on the surface of the water off the shore, indicating that the vessel had sank.

It is not yet clear why the vessel sank as weather conditions had been reasonably good. However, said the spokesperson, it was important that the bodies were found today as the weather is to deteriorate tomorrow and would have hampered any continuing search.

The discovery of the bodies is a further marine tragedy in the southwest of the country today after one man’s body was also found in a separate search off Castletownbere, Co Cork.

The body of a man named locally as John O’Leary, from Barness, Allihies, Co Cork, was found overnight. He and his 17-year-old son had been tipped into the water when their small boat capsized off Cod’s Head on Monday evening. The son, Christopher, had managed to raise the alarm after swimming to shore four hours after the vessel capsized.

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