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Chinese lantern mistaken for emergency flare

Coast Guard gives Chinese lantern warning

Anton McNulty

The Coast Guard has asked people using Chinese lanterns to let the service know. The plea follows an incident last week in which one was mistaken for an emergency flare.
The incident took place at approximately 8pm on Tuesday last, July 26, when a red light was spotted in the sky and mistaken for an emergency flare. The Achill Coast Guard was called out, but the search was later called off when it was discovered that the light was a Chinese lantern.
The flying of Chinese lanterns has become a major concern for emergency services in coastal regions in particular, as a number of them have been mistaken for emergency flares. The phenomenon of releasing these lanterns has become very popular in recent years, particularly for celebrations.
Speaking to The Mayo News, a spokesperson for the Achill Coast Guard said that anyone planning on releasing Chinese lanterns should contact their local emergency service to log details about when they will be released in order to prevent false alarms.
Meanwhile, the Achill Coast Guard was involved in the rescue of a baby dolphin that became stranded in shallow water in Saula. The incident, which took place near Ted Lavelle’s pub, Achill, occurred yesterday (Monday) morning at approximately 9am.
The baby dolphin was taken by the Coast Guard out to deeper water in the effort to reunite it with its school.