Tuesday 10 May 2011

Canoeist found dead off the Island of Eigg !

More sad news. The body of a canoeist was recovered from the sea off Eigg around 5 p.m. on Sunday after being spotted by day trippers aboard the vessel Mary Doune. It is believed there were attempts made to revive the man at the scene but he was announced dead on arrival after his body was taken to the Belford Hospital in Fort William.

No further details are available at present but police say there are no suspicious circumstances. A full report on the matter will be submitted to the procurator Fiscal.

In an another unrelated incident, two canoeists have been rescued from loch Ness just off of Urqhuart Castle today. Apparently both were suffering from varying degrees of hypothermia and have been taken to Raigmore hospital Inverness.

One had been rescued from  the water by a private vessel and was transferred to an RNLI boat, the other person was rescued from the shoreline. Apparently conditions were difficult with a swell of about 1.5 meters running.

These incidents are stark reminders of the dangers of coastal and inland waterways in Scotland and no doubt there will be more of them as we move from spring into summer.

If people are going out on these waters, they should take local advice, carry the right equipment and have some self rescue training. Above all they should be aware of how dangerous inland and coastal waters can be and how quickly conditions can change.

I remember once, windsurfing off of the coast of Scotland not far from Arisaig in the sound of Sleat. Thinking back I must have been crazy. It was a lovely day but with it's fierce tides I wouldn't have stopped till I was half way to America had I got into trouble. At least I had my wetsuit on and my sailboard for company had the worst come to the worst. Aye, right !

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