Belfast Telegraph

Investigation into Cork boat deaths

Marine accident investigators are beginning an inquiry into a boat fire which claimed the lives of three anglers.

An Irishman and two German men were killed when their 25ft motor cruiser, the Castaway, sank off west Cork on Monday.

Two of the dead were named locally as Richard Harmon, from Glengarriff, and German Mike Schmidt, who had been living in the popular tourist spot for about 20 years.

Mr Harmon's family and friends gathered in a pub in the tourist village on Monday night as locals offered their sympathies.

The 69-year-old, who was due to celebrate his 70th birthday next month, was a retired farmer and auctioneer and well known in the community through his work and activism with Fine Gael.

Mr Schmidt, who retired after moving to Glengarriff, was an experienced seaman after spending years working on the merchant navy.

The third man who died was believed to have been living between Glengarriff and the Bantry area. All the men were believed to be in their 60s.

A fourth man from America, the only survivor, was described as walking wounded after being winched to safety from the water.

Officials from the Marine Casualty Investigation Board and the Garda will carry out an inquiry into the incident. It is understood investigations will centre on whether an explosion in the engine caused the fire.

The tragedy occurred about half a mile from shore in Bantry Bay, near Adrigole harbour, at around 5.30pm, 12 miles from Glengarriff.

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