River rescue pontoon puts Limerick council in line for national award

The Limerick Fire and Rescue Service Pontoon at Steamboat Quay.

A RIVER rescue pontoon and floating dock at Steamboat Quay in Limerick City has put Limerick City and County Council in the running for a national Health and Safety Excellence Award.

The Council’s Fire Service River Rescue Pontoon Project was nominated under the Public Sector category for awards recognising outstanding health and safety which will be announced in Dublin tomorrow (Wednesday) night.

The project comprises a river rescue pontoon, access gantry, and floating dock, all of which were installed as an enhancement of the Fire Service’s existing facilities at Steamboat Quay.

It has improved the safety and ergonomics of how the Fire Service deploys personnel and resources to river rescues and it features advanced energy-efficient lighting for visibility during night operations.

Fire Service personnel can access the Fireswift rescue boat quickly at any time and in any conditions, which helps reduce the response time to river rescue incidents: an environment in which even seconds matter.

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The project involved a multidisciplinary team effort, with emphasis on value for money and end users’ needs.  The project succeeded thanks to the health and safety processes and safety management procedures in Limerick Fire and Rescue Service and Limerick City and County Council.

Mayor Francis Foley said the nomination recognises the hard work and dedication of council employees and management working together to maintain excellence in the areas of health and safety.

Chief Fire Officer Michael Ryan added that the river rescue pontoon was a result of robust and engaged health and safety structures within the Fire Service.

“The project is a splendid example of teamwork and how much can be achieved when people share a common goal. It represents value for money and a prudent use of resources,” he said.

The awards, which were launched in 2020, recognise and reward the most outstanding health and safety achievements in Ireland and the teams that drive them.