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Displaying items by tag: Marine Notice

The annual Irish Groundfish Survey (IGFS) for 2021 will be carried out by the Marine Institute off the North West, West and South Coasts of Ireland from Saturday 30 October to Tuesday 14 December.

The IGFS is a demersal trawl survey consisting of approximately 170 fishing hauls of 30-minute duration each in ICES areas VIa, VIIb, VIIg and VIIj.

As part of the requirements for the 2021 survey, fishing will take place within a two-nautical-mile radius of the positions indicated in the appendices to Marine Notice No 57 of 2021, which can be downloaded below.

The survey will be conducted by the RV Celtic Explorer (callsign EIGB) which will display appropriate lights and signals. The vessel will be towing a high headline GOV 36/47 demersal trawl during fishing operations.

The Marine Institute requests that commercial fishing and other marine operators keep a two-nautical-mile area around the tow mid-points clear of any gear or apparatus during the survey period outlined above.

Further details can be found in the Marine Notice attached below.

Published in Fishing

The latest rig move as part of PSE Kinsale Energy’s subsea well abandonment campaign will take place this week, preceded by anchor pre-lay operations.

The Stena Spey mobile offshore drilling unit (MODU) is currently operating at the Seven Heads Gas Field on well 48/24-5A and will relocate to the Ballycotton Gas Field are — which consists of a single well (48/20-2) — around Wednesday 20 October.

In advance of the move, the eight-anchor mooring spread will be pre-laid at the well location, using the MV Maersk Maker (callsign OZGO2) and MV Maersk Mariner (callsign OWGQ2).

After its arrival in the Ballycotton field, it is anticipated that the rig will continue to operate there until mid-November as a minimum, depending on operational progress.

Following completion of activities in the Ballycotton area, the rig will relocate to Scapa Flow, Orkney in Scotland as this will see all wells abandoned and the campaign completed.

The Stena Spey and its attending vessels will be listening on VHF Channel 16 throughout the operation. All vessels, particularly those engaged in fishing, are requested to give the rig (and pre-laid anchor patterns) a wide berth and to keep a sharp lookout in the relevant areas.

Coordinates of the Stena Spey’s new position at Ballycotton and anchor lays in the are detailed in Marine Notice No 58 of 2021, which can be downloaded below.

Published in News Update

The latest Marine Notice from the Department of Transport gives advance notice of the discontinuation of the Differential Global Positioning System (DGPS) service around the coast of the island of Ireland from 31 March 2022.

DGPS has been provided as an augmentation service of the GPS signal by the General Lighthouse Authorities in Ireland and the UK since 1997.

The Commissioners of Irish Lights, in consultation with the Department of Transport, have resolved that the DGPS service has now become redundant and has decided to discontinue the service in waters around the coast of the island of Ireland after 31 March 2022.

Further information and guidance for maritime users is available on the Irish Lights website. This explains the background, consultation with the wider DGPS user group and guidance for maintaining the safety of navigation after the DGPS service ceases next spring.

Published in News Update

The Department of Transport advises that an analogue survey consisting of multibeam, side-scan sonar and magnetometer will be carried out off the South Coast of Ireland by the Marine Institute on behalf of Providence Resources from Saturday 23 to Sunday 31 October, weather permitting.

In addition to the analogue survey, seabed samples and camera imagery will be acquired at approximately 10 stations in the survey area.

The survey will be conducted in Block 48/24 Barryroe, in the North Celtic Basin, around 45–50km from the south coast of Ireland, and will be undertaken by the RV Celtic Voyager (callsign EIQN). The vessel will be towing a side-scan sonar and magnetometer from time to time with cables of up to 300m long.

As this vessel will be restricted in its ability to manoeuvre when surveying, other vessels are requested to keep a wide berth. The vessel will display appropriate lights and signals.

For details of coordinates of the survey area, see Marine Notice No 55 of 2021 which is available to download below.

Published in News Update

The Department of Transport is reminding all fishing vessel owners, operators, skippers and crew of the hazards associated with trawling, including beam trawling and scallop dredging.

It follows the report in August from the Maritime Casualty Investigation Board (MCIB) into the sinking of the FV Alize off Hook Head early last year, which also recently prompted an advisory on the correct use of lifejackets and personal flotation devices on fishing vessels.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, two fishermen died after the FV Alize sank while fishing for scallops out of Duncannon, Co Wexford on 4 January 2020.

Joe Sinnott was recovered from the scene by the Irish Coast Guard’s Waterford-based helicopter Rescue 117 but was later pronounced dead at University Hospital Waterford.

The body of skipper Willie Whelan was found trapped behind equipment on the deck of the sunken vessel and was recovered by divers on 28 January 2020.

The MCIB report concluded that the FV Alize capsized and sank quickly and without warning while hauling its final trawl, most likely due to a stability issue.

Marine Notice No 53 of 2021, which can be downloaded below, outlines a number of safety measures for all voyages that involve trawling or beam trawling.

These include awareness of the dangers of equipment failure and of conditions that can affect stability such as use of fuel and stowage of fish.

Published in Fishing
Tagged under

A benthic survey campaign is being undertaken off the coast of north Co Dublin, Co Meath and Co Louth for the North Irish Sea Array (NISA) offshore wind farm.

Scheduled to begin yesterday, Wednesday 29 September and continue to next Thursday 7 October, the campaign will involve the deployment of benthic grab and drop-down video equipment from a survey vessel within the bounds of the proposed NISA wind farm.

This area forms an irregular, approximately rectangular shape, spanning 31km north-south and 14km east-west at its widest point. At its closest location, near Rush in Co Dublin, the survey site is 7.4km from the coastline.

The survey is being conducted by the survey vessel Husky (callsign 2EQI7). As this vessel is restricted in its ability to manoeuvre when surveying, due to the deployment of the grab sampler from the deck of the vessel for the duration of the drop and recovery, other vessels are requested to keep a wide berth.

An onboard fisheries liaison officer is aboard the vessel throughout the duration of the survey campaign.

Further information, including co-ordinates of the survey area and contact details, can be found in Marine Notice No 52 of 2021, which can be downloaded below.

Published in News Update

Vermilion Exploration & Production Ireland Limited will begin a maintenance campaign at the Corrib Gas Field subsea infrastructure from tomorrow, Friday 1 October.

The maintenance works at the Corrib gas field will take place at Latitude 54° 20’ 20.413” N, Longitude 11° 03’ 30.769” W and are due to last for up to 21 days.

The Edda Sun (callsign LARF7) will undertake the subsea scope of work. All equipment used will be vessel and/or remotely operated vehicle (ROV) mounted. The vessel will be listening on VHF Channel 16 throughout the project.

Mariners are asked to note that visual surveys will be conducted along the Corrib pipelines and umbilicals using vessel mounted ROVs and their associated camera booms. No acoustic survey equipment will be utilised during the campaign.

For further information on the survey area, see Marine Notice No 51 of 2021 which can be downloaded below.

Published in News Update

The next SeaMonitor survey will be carried out by the RV Celtic Voyager in the North Channel from tomorrow, Wednesday 29 September.

This latest stage of the project aims to deploy 80 acoustic listening stations (ALSs) across the North Channel from Malin Head in Ireland to the Isle of Islay in Scotland between over four days, concluding on Saturday 2 October.

These stations will allow recording the presence of tagged marine wildlife including salmon, seals, cetaceans, basking shark and skate species, and provide evidence for conservation measures.

The SeaMonitor project is already ahead of schedule, as previously reported on Afloat.ie, with researchers from Nova Scotia in Canada carrying out expert field work using large-scale acoustic telemetry equipment.

This week’s survey operations will be carried out during daylight hours to facilitate a safe deployment of acoustic receivers on the seabed. The RV Celtic Voyager (callsign EIQN) will display appropriate lights and signals throughout.

For details on relevant locations and contact information, see Marine Notice No 54 of 2021 which can be downloaded below.

Published in Marine Science

Alpha Marine will be undertaking a reconnaissance survey in the Irish Sea off the Wicklow coast to provide background information informing future site investigation works for phase two of the Arklow Bank Wind Park.

The works, which will include magnetometer surveying, are anticipated to start between now and the end of October 2021 and will last for approximately three days, weather dependent.

The survey activities will be undertaken by the multi-purpose crew transfer vessel AMS Panther (callsign 2EHC2).

As this vessel will be restricted in its ability to manoeuvre when surveying, other vessels are requested to keep a wide berth. The vessel will be operating 12 hours per day during survey works.

Specifics of the survey locations and relevant contact details are included in Marine Notice No 50 of 2021, which can be downloaded below.

Published in News Update

A pair of scientific deep-sea moorings have been redeployed at the Goban Spur off the southwestern continental shelf.

Further to the relevant Marine Notice posted in June 2020, the German Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency (BSH) has successfully recovered moorings EB-1 and EB-3 and redeployed them at new coordinates. Recovery is planned for 2022.

Both are free-falling moorings anchored by ~1,000kg bottom weights. Scientific instruments are attached at different depths to ropes and chains. Sub-surface floatation bodies will keep the moorings upright.

As this is sensitive scientific equipment, it is kindly requested that fishermen and marine operators engaged in such activities as bottom trawling or laying of static gear avoid the locations concerned to avoid damaging the equipment or damaging fishing gear.

Mariners should take note that neither of the moorings has a surface element or surface buoy. Top elements and floatation bodies have orange colours. The shallowest elements are located at depths of 700m (mooring EB-1) and 450m (mooring EB-3).

The top elements of both moorings carry radio and iridium beacons that only signal once the top element is at the surface.

Details of the locations of these dee-sea moorings and contact information are included in Marine Notice No 49 of 2021, which is available to download below.

Published in Marine Science
Tagged under
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William M Nixon has been writing about sailing in Ireland and internationally for many years, with his work appearing in leading sailing publications on both sides of the Atlantic. He has been a regular sailing columnist for four decades with national newspapers in Dublin, and has had several sailing books published in Ireland, the UK, and the US. An active sailor, he has owned a number of boats ranging from a Mirror dinghy to a Contessa 35 cruiser-racer, and has been directly involved in building and campaigning two offshore racers. His cruising experience ranges from Iceland to Spain as well as the Caribbean and the Mediterranean, and he has raced three times in both the Fastnet and Round Ireland Races, in addition to sailing on two round Ireland records. A member for ten years of the Council of the Irish Yachting Association (now the Irish Sailing Association), he has been writing for, and at times editing, Ireland's national sailing magazine since its earliest version more than forty years ago

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