Larne RNLI has carried out a potentially lifesaving training exercise with Dublin Coast Guard Helicopter Rescue 116 off Ballygally Head.
The Coast Guard Sikorsky helicopter joined Larne RNLI’s all-weather lifeboat Windsor Runner and its inshore lifeboat Terry to carry out the exercise on Sunday April 10.
The event involved simulating the recovery of a casualty to a helicopter in an emergency situation.
During the high-octane training, the lifeboats practised manoeuvres at speed with the Dublin Coastguard.
In addition, a crew member with a head for heights was winched into the helicopter and a casualty stretcher was transferred from the helicopter to the lifeboat.
The helicopter winchman then took his turn, landing onto the inshore lifeboat.
Larne RNLI Coxswain Frank Healy said: ‘This was a very valuable exercise with the Irish Coast Guard.
“It’s fantastic to step up the volume and breadth of our training coming into what is traditionally a busy summer period for call outs.
“Our thanks to the Irish Coast Guard for making this exercise possible.”
The RNLI regularly carries out exercises with other rescue agencies.
This training ensures that the crew are able to work effectively with other agencies in an emergency situation, including medical evacuation of a casualty to a helicopter.
The Sikorsky helicopter had previously visited Larne on March 20, when it landed on Curran Point and Larne RNLI received a briefing which included an orientation of the helicopter.
The Larne Coastguard team were also present on the day securing a safe landing zone for the helicopter.