A multi-agency rescue mission was launched in Inishowen this week after an emergency beacon for boats was activated inland.
But the alert turned out to be a false alarm as the signal was traced to a recycling centre, and not a ship in distress.
It later emerged that an EPIRB (Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon), commonly used by sailors, was still active when it was thrown into a skip.
The beacon ended up at a recycling facility and was activated this week, alerting the Malin Head Coastguard. The Lough Swilly Lifeboat station and Greencastle Coastguard were tasked to the location, which was two miles inland in the Buncrana area.
Members of Lough Swilly lifeboat station, using local knowledge and “good bit of luck”, tracked down the unit, recovered it from the recycling facility and disabled the unit.
Volunteers took to Facebook today to issue a reminder to those who own an EPIRB to ensure it is safely deactivated before being discarded.
“A good reminder to dispose of old distress beacons and old distress flares in the proper manner. If in doubt seek advice about proper disposal!”