Conor Power, an experienced member of Poseidon Life Saving Club (PLSC), has recently been awarded an RLSS UK 'Certificate of Meritorious Action for Lifeguards' for a heroic rescue, that took place in Greystones, Co. Wicklow, Ireland on Wednesday 11 November 2020.

Conor, aged 17-years-old, was at the beach to complete lifesaving training as part of his Leaving Cert PE project, but weather conditions were poor, so lifesaving training plans were abandoned. After his teacher left, at approximately 14:00, Conor and a friend became aware of a female swimmer in difficulty in strong currents off the shore. Reports were that the woman had been struggling for approx. 20-30 minutes. Conor arranged for the Coastguard to be contacted, then went down to the shoreline to observe. He then collected a life ring and swam out to the woman. The lady was tired and strong currents were pulling her, but Conor was able to tow her away from the rocks. Becoming tired himself, he recognised his own limitations, and after ensuring the swimmer was holding firmly to the life ring, he swam back to shore. On the verge of hypothermia himself, after only 5-10 minutes in the sea, Connor was taken to hospital for assessment. Conditions were so wild that the Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Centre decided to task a helicopter, Rescue 116, rather than a boat. The swimmer was winched out of the water to safety and transported to a hospital. Both made a full recovery.

John Doyle, Head Coach of PLSC, praised Conor for his efforts to save the swimmer and said that he did not take any undue risk himself, as he followed protocol and rang the Coastguard first.

A statement from the Coastguard read: “This swimmer owes their life to the quick reactions of the passing lifeguard and speedy response by Rescue 116”.

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