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Work Begins on Dredging River Shannon in Limerick

18th October 2011
Work Begins on Dredging River Shannon in Limerick

Waterways Ireland has begun work to restore navigation depths for boat traffic around Sarsfield Lock, and the Abbey River areas of the Shannon Navigation in Limerick City. The maintenance dredging contract involves the removal of approximately 20,000 tonnes of silt, clay and gravel. It is also proposed to remove the existing breakwater unit and anchors at the exit from the Abbey River. The breakwater will be replaced with a floating weir protection boom. The section of Navigation to be dredged will be closed to boat traffic for the duration of the contract which is to be completed by the end of December 2011.

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Works will also include a pre and post-works bed survey and excavation of material to restore the original navigation bed level. Floating dredging plant will be used to undertake the task.

Designed and managed by Waterways Ireland, project implementation was awarded through an open tender competition to L&M Keating Limited, Co Clare. Preparatory work has already commenced on site.

A formal Traffic Management Plan has been agreed with Limerick City Council. The dredged material will be transported within the site to approved access points at Sarsfield Lock and the entrance to the Park Canal and will then be removed to a licensed landfill site. To facilitate ease of movement through this area in the pre Christmas period the movement of laden trucks will cease from the 8th December for the Christmas period. There will be no public access to the site for the duration of the project.
Most of the work on this project will be carried out from the water surface. This area is tidal and can be subject to high flow velocities depending on the flow volumes in the River Shannon. It can be expected therefore that general flow conditions will place considerable restrictions on the work.

National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) have been consulted and have approved the proposed works, subject to mitigation measures being undertaken.

A Resident Engineer (RE) has been appointed for the duration of the Contract to deal with issues which may arise. A contact number for the RE will be advertised on information boards displayed on site.

Published in Inland Waterways Team

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