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Major search and rescue operation in the Irish Sea
At 02:20 on 27th November 2011, Hetty Rampton was launched to a report that a ship called SWANLAND was taking in water and sinking 20miles west of Porthdinllaen in severe weather with 8 Russian crew onboard. Pwllheli lifeboat was also tasked together with rescue helicopter from RAF Valley. On scene was the merchant ship BRO GAZELLE + LPG TANKER MONSOON.
At 04:30 lifeboats were on scene but unfortunately the SWANLAND had sunk. 2 crew men had already been rescued from a liferaft by helicopter and taken to Ysbyty Gwynedd in Bangor. A huge search was carried out to look for the other 6 crew men throughout the morning with helicopters from Chivenor and Ireland sent in to search. Abersoch, Trearddur Bay and Holyhead lifeboats were tasked to join the search in the afternoon with several Coast Guard teams searching the shorelines from Abersoch to Llandwrog. At around 13:00 a body was recovered by a rescue helicopter and taken to Bangor Hospital. The search carried on throught the day but nothing was found exept for debris from the SWANLAND. At 16:45, due to fading lights, Holyhead Coast Guard called off the search. Hetty Rampton returned to station with a very tired crew at 17:30.
At 10:30 on Monday 28th November, Hetty Rampton launched again to resume the search for the 5 missing crew men from the SWANLAND. A search was carried out between Porthdinllaen and Abersoch with Coast Guard teams searching the shorelines from Aberdyfi to Holyhead together with RAF helicopters and North Wales Police unfortunately nothing was found. All teams were stood down. The lifeboat returned to station at 15:30
Our thoughts are with the familes of those lost at sea
Further information can be found here
http://alturl.com/d3es7 - Cambrian News - 25-foot waves in pitch black
http://alturl.com/tzb38 - Daily Post Videos - Porthdinllaen RNLI searches for men missing from Swanland cargo ship
http://alturl.com/v3yeq - BBC News - Search for crew of sunken Swanland to resume
http://alturl.com/6apb6 - BBC News - Hunt for five missing crew of sunken Swanland halts
http://alturl.com/n45m3 - RNLI Website - Five Welsh Lifeboats search for missing cargo ship crew