FSR appeal as life-belts tampered with in Derry

A workman installing a lifebelt of the Peace Bridge back in 2011. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 22.6.11
A workman installing a lifebelt of the Peace Bridge back in 2011. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 22.6.11
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Foyle Search & Rescue have issued a public appeal after two life belts were tampered with along the River Foyle.

Foyle Search and Rescue are urging local people to report any such incidents to the PSNI as a matter of urgency, following the latest act of vandalism on Sunday.

Speaking about the incident a FSR spokesperson said: “This necessitated volunteers from FSR being activated and having to re establish both lifesaving devices to ensure they could be used by members of the public when required.

“Lifebelts to date have been used on 39 occasions, the two most recent during November where members of the public activated them to offer assistance to persons who were then successfully rescued.

“Foyle Search & Rescue charity would appeal to the public, if anyone observes these lifesaving devices being tampered with please notify the PSNI A.S.A.P.”

The charity said that extensive plans regarding additional new lifebelts being placed along the River Foyle are now well advanced.

FSR have also revealed its personnel dealt with a total of 36 incidents during November.

Two peoples lives were saved after they were rescued from the River, while 15 people were brought back from the railings or river’s edge.

A further 19 people who were in distress were dealt with and immediately taken to a place of safety.

Foyle Search & Rescue volunteers carry out duties on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights. They are supported by an Emergency Response Team who remain on call 365 days of the year.

The charity was founded in Derry in 1993.