Donation of €17k by Meath firefighters makes SoSad So Happy

Meath Fire Blazers have presented a cheque from their fundraising efforts to the charity ‘SOSAD Navan’.

SOSAD Navan opened a new premise today on Cannon Row and the charitable donation to them from the Meath firefighters group added to their excitement and celebrations.

The Meath Fire Blazers are a team of eight people who take part in the Race Around Ireland and aim to raise as much money as possible for their chosen charity’s which include the Louth/Meath Branch of Down Syndrome and SOSAD.

Meath Fire Blazers Group
Photos: (Meath Fire Blazers via Facebook @meathfireblazers)

The eight-person team members are Barry Quinn, Kevin Flanagan, Richie Faulkner, Thomas Nelson, Stevie McManus, Matt Smyth, Gary Ayton and Brian Rogers.

Today, they presented SoSad with a cheque for €17,395.00

The blazers have acknowledged and thank their sponsors and supporters who helped raise these funds.  EPS Group The Russell Restaurant, Northgate Vehicle Hire – Ireland Ltd, The Round O Bar Navan, Meath Chronicle, Meath County Council, Gleesons Butchers Navan, 121 Fitness, Avonmore Protein Milk, Team CAS Race Around Ireland, Race Around Ireland and Oliver Gough Sales & Hire Ltd.

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SOSAD Navan is one of the many registered charities throughout Ireland which provide a range of supports to anyone who may be affected or concerned about suicide or depression. They provide a range of supports such as suicide interventions, psychological assessments and free counselling to anyone who needs it.

Their five main goals:

1) To raise awareness of suicide in Ireland
2) To break the stigma surrounding suicide
3) To provide support and direction to those who may be approached by someone feeling suicidal
4) To provide support and direction to those feeling depressed and/or suicidal.
5) To provide support and direction for those bereaved by suicide.

SOSAD Area Helpline numbers;
SOSAD Drogheda: 041 9848754
SOSAD Dundalk: 042 9327311
SOSAD Cavan: 049 4326339
SOSAD Navan: 046 9031855
SOSAD Carrickmaross: 042 9668992
SOSAD Tullamore: 057 9346704

Four London Ambulance medics assaulted

Attacks like this are truly unacceptable – Deputy Director London Ambulance Service.

Four emergency medics from London Ambulance Service were assaulted earlier today while attending a call to an unconscious patient in Croydon.

On arriving at the scene, the patient, a 25-year-old male, became aggressive towards the crew. The LAS crew reported back to control that there had been an assault.

London Ambulance Combo 960
Photos: (London Ambulance Service)

LAS Incident Response Officer, Tim Gerhard, was dispatched to the scene to support the medics who were taken to Croydon University Hospital, where they were treated for minor injuries.

London Ambulance Service Deputy Director of Operations, Peter McKenna said “I am appalled by this attack on our staff. The person responsible has been arrested and we are working with the police. Attacks like this are truly unacceptable. This senseless attack also resulted in even more pressure being put on the services as four medics were taken off the road to receive medical treatment and provide statements to police.”

Fleming Medical donates AED’s to Irish Red Cross

Ten Cardiac Science Powerheart G5 AED’s have been donated to the Irish Red Cross.

The donation by Fleming Medical, owners of Medicare and providers of pharmacy confined First Aid brand is part of a three-year partnership agreement.

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Cardiac Science’s Powerheart G5 AED is the only AED in Ireland that combines variable escalating energy for customised patient therapy, it also has faster shock times and real time CPR feedback which is key in emergency situations.

The 3-year agreement is in its 2nd year and includes a range of Medicare & Irish Red Cross branded First Aid Kits plus a co-branded range of Plasters & Dressings.

960 IRC Danny Curran & Mark Fleming
Photo: (Danny Curran, Irish Red Cross and Mark Fleming, Fleming Medical)

Danny Curran, Head of Fund Raising & Commercial Services for the Irish Red Cross said ‘We are delighted with this sizeable donation of AEDs as they are a crucial piece of equipment that we carry in our mobile units in case of cardiac arrest throughout the Irish Red Cross branch network in Ireland’.

Fleming Medical’s Managing Director Mark Fleming said ‘Our Medicare partnership with the Irish Red Cross has delivered over 65 Family First Aid Workshops to over 1,200 family members in pharmacies nationwide in 2017. We would like to thank the Irish Red Cross for their good work by donating 10 of our market leading Powerheart G5 AEDs which we hope will save many lives in emergency situations in the future’.


Firefighters sought for three County Cork fire stations

Cork County Fire Brigade have positions available for retained firefighters in Crosshaven, Carrigaline and Millstreet fire stations in County Cork.

Cork County Council is the employing body of the the positions and closing dates for all three posts is Thursday 1st February.

Part of the pre-employment medical examination includes completing the fitness test. Candidates successful at interview must successfully complete the fitness test prior to employment being offered. The fitness test at the recruit medical is the Chester Step Test. The Chester Step Test measures aerobic capacity and fitness and entails a moderately vigorous level of physical activity. The level of fitness needed to pass this test requires regular exercise and the test pass level is difficult to achieve if the candidate does not already have a good level of physical fitness prior to the test.

Photo: (James Doyle / Emergency Times)

Medical examiners advice is that fitness needed for this test does not come overnight; realistically it takes at least a few weeks and often longer to appreciably improve your fitness level. Candidates who fail the initial Chester Step Test will be offered one further fitness test only. This may be a Chester Step Test or a Shuttle Run test, as determined by Cork County Council. No further retests will be offered.

Only applicants from competent persons who reside and work within 2 miles of the fire station of the relevant unit and whose ordinary activity does not take them away from the town, in which a brigade is located, will be considered.

Photo: (James Doyle / Emergency Times)

Those who sucees in progressing to the position as a firefighter, on receipt of a fire or other emergency call, firefighters should be in attendance at the station within five minutes. Unemployed persons are not precluded from applying, provided that they satisfy the residence and availability requirements.

A successful candidate will only be offered employment on a probationary basis as a Retained Fire-fighter subject to satisfactory completion of the following courses:-

(a) Recruits Suitability Training Course This course is a full-time, three-week course, which will be held in Ireland and will involve staying away from home on a Monday to Friday basis for the three weeks.

(b) Breathing Apparatus Course This course is of a full-time nature, normally of two or three weeks duration and is held outside the county (these may be held in the U.K.). Please note that for Breathing Apparatus purposes all facial growth below the line of the upper lip must be removed, i.e. beards. etc.

(c) Occupational First Aid Course This course is of a full-time nature, normally three days duration and is held within the County.

(d) Class C HGV driving licence.

Photo: (James Doyle / Emergency Times)

Retained Fire-fighters must be prepared to attend other courses which may be held in Ireland or the UK.

Full details and application forms for all three stations are here on this link here

Calling for new recruits – Kildare Fire Service is hiring

Kildare Fire Service is seeking to recruit retained firefighters for one of its North Kildare stations in Leixlip.

The fire service is also holding an Information Session at Leixlip Fire Station on 2nd February.

960 Kildare Fire Service SACFO NIall O' Riordan
Kildare SACFO Niall O’ Riordan, Operations. Photos: (Kildare Fire Service)

Anyone interested in becoming a firefighter are invited to attend the information programme where firefighters will provide information about the role and responsibilities of a firefighter, their duties and requirements. You will also be able to familiarise yourselves with the fire station, fire appliances and the equipment used by Kildare Fire Service.

Senior Fire Officers will also deliver a presentation outlining requirements for the recruitment process, which will benefit anyone interest in the post.

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Suitably qualified candidates will be placed on a panel by Kildare County Council and posts will be filled, subject to sanction by the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government. Panels formed as a result of this competition may be used to fill further vacancies as they arise.

Candidates who become successful firefighters for the retained firefighter’s positions are required to attend and successfully complete a Basic Recruit Course, a Breathing Apparatus Initial Wearers Course and a Compartment Fire Behavior Training Course during their initial/probationary year or be dismissed from the Service.

960 Kildare Fire Service BA and Hosereel

Currently, firefighters in Kildare train on a weekly basis in their stations. They may also attend other fire brigade or related training courses as may be required by the Chief Fire Officer.

Kildare Fire Service
Photo: (Declan Keogh / Emergency Times)

Before being accepted fire-fighters will be required to pass medical, physical and other examinations which may include cardio-vascular assessment tests.

960 Kildare Fire Service Fire Safety Promotions

Kildare Fire Service is a retained service and has six fire stations, with its Central Fire Station in Newbridge led by Chief Fire Officer Celina Barrett. In addition to the fire service responding to emergency calls and assisting the community, fire safety and community engagement are also key parts of Kildare Fire Service, and each year the Fire Prevention department designates open days at nominated fire stations.

To apply for this role, please follow the link for application for and full particulars and good luck!

Link to Retained Fire Fighter Post at Leixlip Fire Station

960 Kildare Fire Service Leixlip Open Day Poster

Civil Defence drones and K-9 units join midlands river search

Search and Rescue Drones and a K-9 Unit joined a large search today on the river Shannon, south of Athlone on the Roscommon/Westmeath border.

Civil Defence teams from counties Roscommon and Westmeath were joined by civil defence drone units from Cavan and Galway and the K-9 unit from Dublin Civil Defence.

Roscommon and Westmeath Civil Defence 960
Photo: (Courtesy Roscommon Civil Defence)

Drones were used to search some areas which proved difficult to reach due to floods and the search dog, Max, was used along the river from one of the boats during the search. Teams are searching for a man missing from Athlone.

Volunteers will continue the search tomorrow.

RN and WH Civil Defece SAR vehicles 960
Photo: (Courtesy Roscommon Civil Defence)

Roscommon Civil Defence Officer Ray Dunne has thanks those who gave time for the search in cold and wet conditions and also thanks the assisting civil defence units from Cavan, Galway and Dublin.

The search continues.

Kilkenny CFR’s have AED locations down to a fine art

Communities in North Kilkenny will benefit from the availability of AED’s and further awareness of providing life-saving skills.

Johnstown and Crosspatrick Defibrillator group, which celebrates its 1st anniversary this month is involved in many promotions in their local communities to help raise awareness of the use of an AED and their locations.

There are currently seven Community First Responders (CFR’s) in the group while a further three more are due to join following training. Two outdoor cabinets have been purchased by the group as part of their 1st year anniversary.

CFR Killenny Johnstown Spar AED
Pic: (Johnstown & Crosspatrick Debrillator group) via their Facebook

In a report in this week’s ‘Kilkenny People’, CFR volunteer Cathy Dermody told reporter Mary Cody “We go out and attend calls for the National Ambulance Service. When they receive an emergency call they contact us and we go there while the person is waiting for paramedics. If someone needs life-saving assistance, then we are able to help and the group is all trained in First Aid.”

Art competitions are underway in primary schools in Johnstown, Crosspatrick and Galmoy and a separate art competition at Colaiste Mhuire. Judging will take place on 11th February at Saint Kieran’s Community Hall, Johnstown where an exhibition of all entries will take place. Judges include Councillor Mary Hilda Cavanagh, John Fitzgerald of CFR Ireland and Norma O’Donnell of the National Ambulance Service.

Recently, Johnstown and Crosspatrick’s CFR counterparts in nearby Galmoy have also been provided with an AED which is located at Sports Pavilion at Galmoy GAA.

CFR Johnstown KK 960

Speaking to Mary Cody in the ‘Kilkenny People’, Cathy Dermody said “When someone suffers a cardiac arrest every second is crucial in whether they make a recovery or not. For every minute that passes the chance of survival drops by ten percent. It is vitally important not only to have defibrillators but also that people have easy access to them and know where they are located. Minutes save lives in these situations.”

*Source: Kilkenny People

Garda Sports Star Awards

Eleven awards were presented to gardaí for their achievements in their chosen sports, locally, nationally and internationally, at the 24th annual Coiste Siamsa Garda Sportstar Awards last night in County Laois.

The awards, presented by RTÉ’s Marty Morrissey were held at the Midlands Park Hotel in Portlaoise.

The Garda Sport Stars were awarded for their participation in cycling, athletics, gaelic football, boxing, Ladies gaelic football, Fly-fishing, shooting hurling, golf, and the Garda 4 peaks challenge.

Winners List:

Garda Sportstars Awrads Group Winners
Photo: (Coiste Siamsa An Garda Síochána)

Eve McCrystal – Cycling
In August 2017 Eve and her cycling partner Katie George Dunleavy won gold in the Road Race and the Time Trial events at the World Paralympic Championships in South Africa. Eve was also a member of the Garda Cycling team which took part in the 2017 Ras Na mBan and finished as the top Irish rider in the event. As a result of these achievements she was nominated for the RTE Sportsperson of the Year Award in December. This is her 4th Coiste Siamsa award. Eve is a Garda stationed at Ballybay Garda Station and is a native of Co. Louth.

Athletics- Tom Power
Tom has been running marathons for ten years and in 2017 he decided to run the highest marathon in the world, the Everest Marathon. This event takes place at 17,000 feet and in -17 degree temperatures. In November as part of the first Irish team to compete in the event, Tom completed the race in 7 hours and 40 minutes and finished 25th out of 50 athletes who started. In doing so he also raised money for three charities. Tom is from Dublin and is a Detective Garda at The Garda Technical Bureau and lives in Lucan in Dublin.

David Clarke- Gaelic Football
David played in goal for the Mayo senior football team in 2017. He is the holder of five Connaught senior titles; as well as two Mayo County titles and one All-Ireland Club title with Ballina Stephenites. In 2017 he was awarded his 2nd GPA/GAA All-Star award. This is his third Garda Sportstar award. David is a Garda Stationed at Tubbercurry, Co. Sligo.

Boxing- Niall Kennedy
Niall is undefeated in 9 professional bouts in the heavyweight division, including 5 knockouts. In March of 2017 he won the Massachusetts State title and in September he added the New England title, Niall is a Garda attached to Wicklow Garda Station and is a native of Co. Wexford.

Ladies Gaelic Football- Martha Carter
Mayo star Martha was a member of this year’s beaten all Ireland finalists and nominated for an All Star awards for her efforts. She is the holder of 2 Division 1 League titles and one Division 2 title. Martha is a Garda stationed at Sligo Garda Station.

Declan Conlon- Fly-fishing
In August of 2017 Declan finished 2nd in the Irish Masters Fly-Fishing Championships and he will represent Ireland in Spain later this year at the World Masters Championships. Following another great performance in September in the All Ireland Qualifying Series he has been selected for the Irish Team at the European Championships in 2018. He was also a member of the Garda team that won the British and UK Fly-Fishing Championships in September 2017. Declan is a native of Rathangan, Co. Kildare and is a Garda based at Clondalkin Garda Station.

Jeff Kehoe- Shooting
Jeff has been shooting for the past 10 years and in that time he has represented An Garda Síochána and his country at many competitions. In July of 2017 Jeff became a triple world champion and set a new world record breaking his own previous record in the centrefire gallery rifle. Jeff also played a major role in helping the Irish Team capture the International Gallery Rifle Federation World Cup This is Jeff’s second Coiste Siamsa Award. Jeff is a native of Co. Wexford and is a Garda stationed at Bailieboro, Co Cavan.

Colm Boyle – Gaelic Football
Colm is one of the most outstanding and consistent players on the Mayo senior football panel. In 2017 he won his 4th Football All-star award. Colm is the holder of five Connacht titles and has also guided his club Davitts to county and provincial success. He is a Garda Stationed at Westport in Co. Mayo.

Team of the Year- Garda College Hurling Club
In 2017 the Garda College Hurling team won both the League title and the Ryan Cup, which is the Division 2 Higher Education Championship, beating IT Sligo in the final. This in only the second time the Garda College as won this championship. They were also winners of the Cup and Shield at the Seamus McIntyre Tournament and runners up in the All Ireland Garda Hurling Final.

Special Contribution Award- Garda 4 Peaks Challenge
In May 2017 over 100 Garda members took part in the 4 Peaks Challenge. The aim of the event was to raise money for the mental health charity ‘Aware’. The challenge was to climb the highest mountains in each Irish province in three days. Over €80,000 was raised from the event and it also led to the setting up of a new Hiking Club which will continue to encourage members to participate in the sport.

Hall of Fame –Paul Rayfus (Golf)
Paul has a number of notable achievements in the world of amateur golf including; between 1984 and ’87 winning the Dundalk Scratch Cup; the West and East of Ireland Championships and was runner up in Ireland Close Championships at Royal Dublin in 1986. Between the years 1986 and 1988 he represented Ireland internationally and was part of the Irish team that won the Triple Crown for the first time in 1987. Other notable achievements include representing Leinster and winning the Inter Provincial Title in 1987 for the first time. Paul also played in the Irish Open in 1987 and 1988. He also has something in common with Tiger Woods – both were beaten on the 18th at Porthcawl by Gary Walstenholm. Paul retired from An Garda Síochána in 2009.  He was born in Co. Kildare but has lived in Trim Co. Meath since the age of two.

Mountain Rescue purchase new vehicle with departmental funding

The South East Mountain Rescue Association has purchased a new Landrover Discovery from a donation of €50,000 from the Department of Rural and Community Development.

The new Landrover Discovery is replacing the SEMRA’s 10-year-old Landrover Defender, which has served the organisation well. Volunteers with the mountain rescue team have being making themselves familiar with the new rescue response vehicle at a recent exercise scenario.

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Photo: (South East Mountain Rescue Association)

The funding from the department helped purchase the new vehicle, in addition to the generous donations from mountaineering and hiking clubs, businesses, individuals and members, both in the South East of Ireland and further afield.

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Photo: (South East Mountain Rescue Association)

The SEMRA says their combined donations ensure the team can provide a sustainable voluntary mountain rescue service within the south-eastern region.

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Photo: (South East Mountain Rescue Association)

According to the South East Mountain Rescue Association, it costs in excess of €3,000 each month to run the association, and while any financial support from the State is very much welcome, it is still not sufficient to sustain their operational costs of and have said they are therefore constantly fund raising and receiving funding and donations are paramount to our survival.


Over 200 patients treated by Wicklow Rapid Response in 2017

A stabbing, cardiac arrest, multiple casualty incidents and road traffic collisions were just some of the 225 emergency calls which Wicklow Rapid Response dealt with during 2017.

Over 200 patients were treated by the advanced and critical pre-hospital emergency care service, provided voluntarily by Wicklow Rapid Response WWRR) at the request of the National Ambulance Service.

In its review of 2017, WWRR outlined their calls:

  • 30 cardiac arrests, of which 5 survived to hospital discharge, with a complete recovery
  • 17 paediatric cases
  • 40 Road Traffic Collisions
  • 4 multiple casualty incidents
  • 2 agricultural injuries
  • 1 stabbing

In addition to responding rapidly due to being available in the community, the WWRR doctor is also able to bring additional specialist skills and treatments to the patient. This year these included:

9 General Anaesthetics (inducing a medical coma to place a patient on life support to protect their airway in cases of severe head injury or where a patient is deeply unconscious) and 26 patients discharged at scene (avoiding the need to transport to the Emergency Department, thus freeing up ambulance resources and Emergency Department capacity).

WWRR 2017 Review

Wicklow Rapid Response Chairman Colm Dempsey said: “Bringing the hospital to the patient is what Wicklow Rapid Response is all about. There are people alive today due to the treatment that a specialist Emergency Medicine doctor can provide. Wicklow Rapid Response is one of only 4 such services currently providing this level of care in Ireland”

Wicklow Rapid Response is a voluntary organisation, which aims to provide near Intensive Critical Care level treatment for their local communitiy in the pre-hospital environment, where there are life-threatening circumstances.

The volunteer emergency medical Doctor, who specialises in pre-hospital emergency medicine, using the Skoda Yeti Rapid Response vehicle, to rapidly respond is declared as a National Ambulance Service asset. He is called simultaneously with the Ambulance, when a serious emergency such as a cardiac arrest or major trauma occurs.

Wicklow Rapid Response receives no statutory funding and is completely dependent on donations to support the service. You can make a contribution at