An International Lifesaving Conference for European Lifesaving Federations from 22 countries throughout Europe was held in Dublin last weekend. Many issues concerning water safety and rescue were discussed, with particular emphasis on standardisation within Europe with regard to beach safety, swimming pool safety and rescue techniques. At the closing ceremony the President of International Life Saving (Europe), Dr. Klaus Wilkens thanked Irish Water Safety for hosting the event, which was last held in Ireland in 2004. He spoke warmly concerning the facilities available in Ireland for the holding of such conferences and the renowned welcome of the Irish in quoting “a hundred thousand welcomes” for which the Irish are world renowned.
Dr. Wilkens, who is also the President of the DLRG (German Lifesaving Organisation) which ranks as one of the largest lifesaving organisations in the world, took the opportunity to present that Organisation’s highest honour to Mr. Frank Nolan, Chairman of Irish Water Safety, in recognition of his dedication and loyalty to lifesaving at home and worldwide. In presenting the Gold medal, Dr. Wilkens explained that Irish Water Safety and the German Lifesaving Federation had worked closely over many years since 1971 to promote safety for all to enjoy the great benefits that the aquatic environment has to offer. As a mark of this fact the Presidium of the DLRG wished to honour Frank Nolan.
Frank Nolan who is a retired member of the Garda Siochana and having served in the Waterford Kilkenny Division has given a lifetime commitment to the promotion of water safety and rescue in Ireland and abroad. He is an expert in water safety matters, sea rescue and cliff rescue and is the present Chairman of Irish Water Safety, which comes under the auspices of the Department of the Environment. He serves on many national and international committees with regard to water safety and his opinion is valued.