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Displaying items by tag: Dun Laoghaire Harbour

Investigations are underway at Dun Laoghaire Harbour to determine how and why an unmanned pleasure craft went 'out of control' on Thursday evening (May 16th) and damaged neighbouring boats in the inner Coal Harbour area.

Social media footage captured the scene on an otherwise idyllic night in the south Dublin harbour as a 7-metre Rigid Inflatable Boat (RIB) spun out of control on its mooring and careered into moored boats, including those of a harbour sailing school.

An eyewitness said, "Two people were thrown from the boat while putting it on the mooring. They accidentally hit the throttle, and both were thrown from the rib. The boat continued to go around in circles until it eventually broke the mooring and ended up crashing." 

A local source said, "Luckily, nobody was killed or maimed". 

Another told Afloat: "There was damage when the RIB mounted a nearby pontoon where sailing school boats and equipment are stored".

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Dublin Bay Water Wag No. 50 Siskin, sailed by Mandy Chambers and Sue Westrup, was the winner of Wednesday night's (May 17th) AIB DBSC race.

Held in warm sunshine in an ENE 5-6 knot breeze at Dun Laoghaire Harbour, Race Officer Tadgh Donnelly set a three-round course for the 23 competing boats.

The race was a handicap race with the fleet divided into eight staggered starts.

The wind dropped as the first boat approached the leeward gate for the second time so the Race Officer shortened the course at the weather mark after two rounds and a final beat with Mandy Chambers and Sue Westrup sailing Siskin getting the gun.

AIB DBSC Water Wag race results (May 17th) 

  1. No. 50 Siskin, Mandy Chambers and Sue Westrup
  2. No. 31 Polly, Richard Mossop and Henry Rook
  3. No. 15 Moosmie, John O’Driscoll and Shirley Gilmore
Published in Water Wag

Local sailing stalwart Hal Sisk will deliver a lecture on ‘developments in transforming Dun Laoghaire Harbour’ next Wednesday 15 May at the Royal Marine Hotel in Dun Laoghaire.

The talk begins at 8pm and admission is €5. Parking is free for attendees.

Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council is considering 'a high-performance sailing unit' based in Dún Laoghaire Harbour's former coastguard station.

The County Architect revealed details of the project on RTE Television on Friday (May 3rd) when the Nationwide TV programme visited the harbour on the south side of Dublin Bay to hear about restoration work that has given a new lease of life to some of the nearby coastguard cottages.

As previously reported by Afloat, Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council renovated the buildings as social homes in 2021.

County Architect Andrée Dargan told the programme that the town master plan aims to increase public access to the water. As part of that drive, "There is an idea that we would develop a high-performance sailing unit here," she said.

"One of the areas being considered for that is the former coastguard station", Dargan told RTE's Bláthnaid Ní Chofaigh.

The programme aired on Friday, May 3rd at 7 pm on RTE One and is viewable on the RTE Player.

Currently, the Irish Olympic Sailing Team is located on the grounds of the Commissioners of Irish Lights, also in Dun Laoghaire Harbour. Its base comprises a number of converted shipping containers and a floating slipway and pontoon

Those plans were announced in May 2018 and opened in March 2019 after Annalise Murphy's Olympic silver medal achievement in Rio 2016.

The aim of the base is to improve their training and educational opportunities, thereby creating systematic medal potential.

The Coastguard station location is also identified in DLRCoCo's concept plans for its National Watersports Campus published in January 2023 here

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The RTE Nationwide TV programme visits Dún Laoghaire Harbour on the south side of Dublin Bay to hear about a project supported by Local Government, which has given a new lease of life to some old harbour cottages.

As previously reported by Afloat, Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council renovated the buildings as social homes in 2021.

The programme airs on Friday, May 3rd at 7 pm on RTE One and is also viewable on the RTE Player.

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There are busy scenes at Dun Laoghaire Harbour this Thursday, April 25th as the second cruise liner of the 2024 season berthed off the harbour in Scotsman's Bay.

Passengers disembarked from the 330-metre Regal Princess just after 7 am at the new tender pontoon at the harbour's number three berth in front of the Royal St. George Yacht Club.

The visit follows Tuesday's arrival of the much smaller Viking Venus at 220-metres, marking the start of the town's cruise season, which will see 80 ships between April and October.

Making use of the new recently installed ship fendering at the number two berth on the Carlisle Pier adjacent to the National Yacht Club was the Bahamas-flagged 41-metre Research/Survey Vessel Fugro Helmert, having arrived from Swansea in Wales. 

Research/Survey Vessel Fugro Helmert berthed at Dun Laoghaire Harbour's Carlisle PierResearch/Survey Vessel Fugro Helmert berthed at Dun Laoghaire Harbour's Carlisle Pier

Yacht Racing 

Following last night's in-harbour 22-boat Water Wag race, Thursday evening (where light winds are expected) marks the start of the 2024 Dublin Bay Sailing Club Cruiser-racer season from Dun Laoghaire. A full programme of racing planned around an upgraded set of buoys now laid in the bay for the club's 140th anniversary season.

The visiting superyacht Sorceress, moored at a deepwater berth at Dun Laoghaire Marina, is almost three times the size of any competing DBSC cruiser, and the Marshall Island flagged yacht makes her presence felt with a black mast that towers over the 800-berth facility.

Much of the activity is viewable on three Dublin Bay webcams

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Saturday’s (April 13th) Lift-in of yachts and boats at Dun Laoghaire Harbour in gusty westerly winds and sunny conditions marked the opening of the 2024 summer sailing season on the capital's waters of Dublin Bay. 

In the harbour, the National Yacht Club and neighbouring Royal St. George YC lifted in approximately 30 sailing cruisers apiece using mobile cranes in a day-long operation. On the West Pier, the DMYC also employed a mobile crane.

The boats had wintered ashore on hardstanding at the club premises.

The annual lift-in of boats at the Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club on Saturday, April 13th ahead of the 2024 Dublin Bay Sailing Club summer season Photo: AfloatThe annual lift-in of boats at the Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club on Saturday, April 13th ahead of the 2024 Dublin Bay Sailing Club summer season Photo: Afloat

At the same time, an-18 mile ISORA coastal race took place from Dun Laoghaire Harbour, drawing a fleet of eight from Howth, Dun Laoghaire and Greystones for the first coastal race of 2024 as Afloat reports here.

While in the Coal Harbour area, leading yacht broker MGM boats staged a showcase of new yachts and motorboats for the forthcoming season.

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On Saturday night, a young girl was rescued from the sea at Dún Laoghaire Harbour in south County Dublin, thanks to a multi-agency rescue operation involving the Coast Guard, RNLI and gardaí.

The incident occurred at around 8.20 pm off the town's east pier. The child was taken to the hospital for treatment of her injuries, which have been described as non-life threatening.

It is unclear how the child ended up in the water, but high waves were noted in the area at the time. Prior to being safely taken on board an RNLI inshore lifeboat, several members of the public attempted to enter the water to rescue the girl.

The scene was attended by Dún Laoghaire Coast Guard, the RNLI, Rescue 116, and several other emergency services.

RTE News reports that Luke Nolan from Rathfarnham in Dublin was walking Dún Laoghaire pier with two friends when he said he heard a girl crying out for help.

The 24-year-old said he and his friends found a young girl and an older man on the edge of the pier, both soaked from head to toe, who were trying to reach the other young girl in the water.

Mr Nolan and his friends tried to tie a number of life rings together and enter the water but he said the waves were too strong.

"It was extremely wild, the wind was crazy and the waves just kept coming and coming".

He said he was relieved the girl was rescued and that she had appeared to remain calm throughout the incident which he said lasted around half an hour.

He said those who had witnessed the incident were shaken and that although he was a sea swimmer it would make him think twice about entering the water.

"I've never experienced anything like it to be honest".

Commenting on the callout, Dun Laoghaire RNLI Lifeboat Operations Manager Ed Totterdell said, ‘Our thoughts are with the young child and their family, after what must have been a frightening experience. We would also like to thank the members of the public who raised the alarm by contacting the Coast Guard so quickly.

‘I am very proud of my lifeboat crew for their actions and swift response. We train every week for every possible scenario and this was one of those times where every second counted. I hope that this young person makes a full and swift recovery.’

If you find yourself in the water, the RNLI advice is FLOAT TO LIVE. Lie on your back and make a star shape, relax and try to control your breathing, using your hands to help you stay afloat. If you see someone in difficulty in the water, dial 999 or 112 and ask for the Coast Guard.

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The Navy's LE George Bernard Shaw was one of the first arrivals of the season to use the new ship fender installation at Dun Laoghaire Harbour's Carlisle Pier. 

As regular Afloat readers recall, the installation in August 2023 of nine new fenders supported on tubular piles is to increase the capacity and flexibility of the quay for berthing a range of vessels which moor at the Harbour.

LE George Bernard Shaw arrived for the St. Patrick's Day festivities, and her crew took part in the town's first St. Patrick's Day parade for decades.

Visitors to 'berth number three' include Navy ships, cruise liners, wind farm service and research vessels, beam trawlers and visiting superyachts. 

Some of the new ship fenders visible to the left of the bow of the the Navy's LE George Bernard Shaw Photo: AfloatSome of the new ship fenders visible to the left of the bow of the the Navy's LE George Bernard Shaw Photo: Afloat

The project required the demolition and removal of three existing concrete buttresses and steel fender collars. 

It has been a busy time for upgrading the 200-year-old harbour as the fender installation occurred, as separate €2m works were completed to the revetement at the back of town's East Pier.

The works follow extensive repairs since March 2018, when Storm Emma caused serious damage to the East Pier.

There was a strong maritime presence for the rebirth of Dun Laoghaire's St Patrick's Day Parade, which attracted up to 30,000 people to Ireland's biggest boating centre in the spring sunshine.

Among the 46 groups participating was the Irish Navy, which arrived by sea on the L.É. George Bernard Shaw and moored in Dun Laoghaire Harbour for the National Holiday weekend.

The Irish National Sailing School based at the West Pier, Dun Laoghaire had three floats, including a Viking Ship under sail Photo: AfloatThe Irish National Sailing School based at the West Pier, Dun Laoghaire had three floats, including a Viking Ship under sail Photo: Afloat

Organisers were not disappointed when the Irish National Sailing School answered the call for colourful floats with a fully-crewed Viking Ship under sail as part of their three-float participation that also included an RS21 keelboat and a 7-metre RIB.

The seafront parade lasted for approximately one hour, from 11 a.m. to 12 noon. The route ran along the Dublin Bay coast and ended at the Marine Road junction into the Harbour, with parade participants dispersing into the Harbour area.

Sailors from the Irish Navy's L.É. George Bernard Shaw participated in the St. Patrick's Day Parade Photo: AfloatSailors from the Irish Navy's L.É. George Bernard Shaw participated in the St. Patrick's Day Parade Photo: Afloat

Dun Laoghaire Harbour RNLI lifeboat and the Dun Laoghaire Coastguard Unit were well represented.

It was the first Dun Laoghaire Parade in decades, with the last being held in the 1960s.

Crowds on the seafront at Dun Laoghaire's Newtownsmith Green for the start of the 2024 Dun Laoghaire St. Patrick's Day ParadeCrowds on the seafront at Dun Laoghaire's Newtownsmith Green for the start of the 2024 Dun Laoghaire St. Patrick's Day Parade Photo: Afloat

Organisers say the Parade allowed local residents and visitors to gather and celebrate local culture, heritage, community and 'everything we are proud of' and involved local schools, sports clubs, community, music and dance groups and businesses.

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Sharks in Irish waters

Irish waters are home to 71 species of shark, skates and rays, 58 of which have been studied in detail and listed on the Ireland Red List of Cartilaginous fish. Irish sharks range from small Sleeper sharks, Dogfish and Catsharks, to larger species like Frilled, Mackerel and Cow sharks, all the way to the second largest shark in the world, the Basking shark. 

Irish waters provide a refuge for an array of shark species. Tralee Bay, Co. Kerry provides a habitat for several rare and endangered sharks and their relatives, including the migratory tope shark, angel shark and undulate ray. This area is also the last European refuge for the extremely rare white skate. Through a European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) project, Marine Institute scientists have been working with fishermen to assess the distribution, diversity, and monthly relative abundance of skates and rays in Tralee, Brandon and Dingle Bays.

“These areas off the southwest coast of Ireland are important internationally as they hold some of the last remaining refuges for angel shark and white skate,” said Dr Maurice Clarke of the Marine Institute. “This EMFF project has provided data confirming the critically endangered status of some species and provides up-to-date information for the development of fishery measures to eliminate by-catch.” 

Irish waters are also home to the Black Mouthed Catshark, Galeus melastomus, one of Ireland’s smallest shark species which can be found in the deep sea along the continental shelf. In 2018, Irish scientists discovered a very rare shark-nursery 200 nautical miles off the west coast by the Marine Institute’s ROV Holland 1 on a shelf sloping to 750 metres deep. 

There are two ways that sharks are born, either as live young or from egg casings. In the ‘case’ of Black Mouthed Catsharks, the nursery discovered in 2018, was notable by the abundance of egg casings or ‘mermaid’s purses’. Many sharks, rays and skate lay eggs, the cases of which often wash ashore. If you find an egg casing along the seashore, take a photo for Purse Search Ireland, a citizen science project focusing on monitoring the shark, ray and skate species around Ireland.

Another species also found by Irish scientists using the ROV Holland 1 in 2018 was a very rare type of dogfish, the Sail Fin Rough Shark, Oxynotus paradoxus. These sharks are named after their long fins which resemble the trailing sails of a boat, and live in the deep sea in waters up to 750m deep. Like all sharks, skates and rays, they have no bones. Their skeleton is composed of cartilage, much like what our noses and ears are made from! This material is much more flexible and lighter than bone which is perfect for these animals living without the weight of gravity.

Throughout history sharks have been portrayed as the monsters of the sea, a concept that science is continuously debunking. Basking sharks were named in 1765 as Cetorhinus maximus, roughly translated to the ‘big-nosed sea monster’. Basking sharks are filter feeders, often swimming with their mouths agape, they filter plankton from the water.

They are very slow moving and like to bask in the sun in shallow water and are often seen in Irish waters around Spring and early Summer. To help understand the migration of these animals to be better able to understand and conserve these species, the Irish Basking Shark Group have tagged and mapped their travels.

Remarkably, many sharks like the Angel Shark, Squatina squatina have the ability to sense electricity. They do this via small pores in their skin called the ‘Ampullae of Lorenzini’ which are able to detect the tiny electrical impulses of a fish breathing, moving or even its heartbeat from distances of over a kilometre! Angel sharks, often referred to as Monkfish have a distinctively angelic shape, with flattened, large fins appearing like the wings of an angel. They live on the seafloor in the coastal waters of Ireland and much like a cat are nocturnal, primarily active at night.

The intricate complexity of shark adaptations is particularly noticeable in the texture of their skin. Composed of miniscule, perfectly shaped overlapping scales, the skin of shark provides them with protection. Often shark scales have been compared to teeth due to their hard enamel structure. They are strong, but also due to their intricate shape, these scales reduce drag and allow water to glide past them so that the shark can swim more effortlessly and silently. This natural flawless design has been used as inspiration for new neoprene fabric designs to help swimmers glide through the water. Although all sharks have this feature, the Leafscale Gulper Shark, Centrophorus squamosus, found in Ireland are specifically named due to the ornate leaf-shape of their scales.