DRONES and the Coast Guard are continuing to search for a woman at West Cork’s Long Strand this week.
Supt Ger O’Mahony said the search for the woman – who is in her 40s and is from the greater Clonakilty area – commenced at 9pm on Tuesday night. The Clonakilty-based superintendent said the woman was last seen at about 11pm on Monday night.
He also confirmed that the gardaí had located a vehicle and property belonging to her at Long Strand. The extensive search has involved the gardaí, the Castlefreke Coast Guard, the Waterford-based Coast Guard helicopter, and Union Hall RNLI.
Supt O’Mahony said the search resumed on Wednesday morning with gardaí and the Coast Guard searching from first light at about 5am.
‘We are utilising drones,’ he said, ‘and the Coast Guard is also engaged in a co-ordinated search along the beach.
‘We are concentrating on the immediate area first – Long Strand and adjoining cliffs – and in this regard the drone facilitates a fairly speedy search. We have people out walking the beach with the Coast Guard and members of our own units,’ he added, ‘and we did a sweep with the Union Hall lifeboat on Wednesday morning.
‘There are a lot of resources deployed in the search,’ the superintendent told The Southern Star, ‘and the gardaí are also examining CCTV footage, which will hopefully give us an indication.’
John Kelleher, the lifeboat operations manager with Union Hall RNLI, confirmed that they joined the search at 9.40pm on Tuesday night and the crew used searchlights before being stood down at midnight.
For an hour on Tuesday night, Valentia Coast Guard was also called in to provide aerial assistance, using more powerful searchlights.
The lifeboat crew was requested to launch again on Wednesday morning to do a sweep but they were stood down shortly after.
Gerard O’Flynn of the Coast Guard confirmed they had received an overnight request from the gardaí to assist with the search for the missing person. He said a drone was also engaged in the search.
The search is continuing along the coastline today.