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Displaying items by tag: Navigation

Dublin Bay Sailing Club in conjunction with Dublin Port will present a navigation talk at the next ‘Speaker Supper’ on Friday 21 February.

Patrick Cafferky will give the talk on ‘Marine and Navigation Safety from a Marine Pilot’s Perspective’ in the National Yacht Club dining room from 8.30pm, following supper at 7.30pm sharp.

The meal is €25 a head and all waterfront clubs are welcome to attend. To book please contact Tim at [email protected], Louise or Kristyna at [email protected] or phone 01 280 5725.

Published in DBSC

#HowToSail - Next month Howth Yacht Club will host a two-day course on essential navigation and seamanship for cruising in coastal waters.

Run on Saturday 13 and Sunday 14 October, the course is touted as the ideal introduction to the essential knowledge required to plan and safely undertake short cruising passages in coastal waters.

The "concise yet highly informative" course is geared towards skippers and crew who are new to cruising, but is equally suitable for sailing yachts, motorboats, RIBs, divers and sea anglers.

The course will include:

  • Charts and chart work
  • Safety
  • Navigation buoys and lights
  • ‘Rules of the Road’
  • Tides
  • Weather
  • Passage planning and pilotage
  • Modern methods of electronic navigation

Presented by David Jerrard of Sea-Craft, the course runs from 9.30am to 5.30pm each day in HYC. The course fee is €120 which includes the full course pack and documentation.

The course is open to both club members and non-members so feel free to bring along a friend or colleague.

For more details and booking information, contact [email protected] or phone Sea-Craft at 01 286 3362 anytime.

Published in Howth YC
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The deck lights used by cruise ships have been identified as a potential navigation risk at sea at night, in the investigation of a complaint by a yacht Skipper following an encounter with a cruise vessel, writes Tom MacSweeney.

It was investigated by the CHIRP Maritime organisation, the British (UK) Confidential Reporting Programme for Maritime incidents. The aim of CHIRP is to contribute to the enhancement of maritime safety worldwide. It says that it provides “a totally independent confidential (not anonymous) reporting system for all individuals employed in the maritime industry. It provides a similar aviation system.

The yacht Skipper reported to CHRIP that it was difficult to distinguish navigation lights amongst other deck lights:

“I was under sail in a Southerly direction when I saw the lights of another vessel off my starboard bow.” Endeavouring to keep clear “the relative tracks didn’t seem, to make sense if I was seeing what I thought was a green starboard navigation light.”

The vessel was a cruise ship which crossed a mile ahead, going from East to West.

“I should therefore, have been able to see the port navigation light, but could not convince myself there was a red light amongst the multitude of other lights visible on the cruise liner.”

As the vessels were both a safe distance from each other, there was no harm, but the amount of coloured lights on cruise ships has been identified as an issue needing attention.

The yacht Skipper said: “The Collision Regulations specify the minimum visibility of navigation lights. However, the impact of other bright lights, obscuring the navigation lights, is not appreciated. Vessels should ensure that their navigation lights are bright enough to be seen against the background of all their other lights and avoid using coloured deck lights where this can cause confusion. Very bright deck working lights obscuring navigation lights are often an issue on fishing boats as well.”

The CHIRP investigation comment said: “The Maritime Advisory Board highlighted the importance of taking a series of compass bearings in order to determine whether a risk of collision exists Navigation light visibility, irrespective of other lighting, must comply with COL REGS.

“They queried why classification societies permit these designs where visibility is obscured. Technology exists whereby deck lighting may be adequately shaded – permitting safe movement on board, yet not obscuring regulatory lights. The quality of lights bulbs used is another possible consideration. Take LED for example – are approved suppliers holding the introduction of these back due to a lack of any requirement in COLREGS?”

Published in Cruise Liners
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#InlandWaters - Waterways Ireland advises masters and users of the Shannon Navigation that a new green conical navigation aid has been placed north of Inch Macdermot Island in Lough Ree between the green perch and the green can buoy, as shown on the guide above.

Published in Inland Waterways

#Offshore - Just in time for the release of Disney’s new seafaring adventure Moana comes this National Geographic profile of a team of sailors recreating the incredible navigations of Polynesian boats that inspired the animated film.

The crew of the Hōkūle‘a sail the ocean with nothing but the sun and the stars to guide them — even watches are banned.

And the Hawaiian team have been doing it since the mid 1970s, on a mission to prove their Polynesian ancestors were master navigators of the vast expanse of the Pacific.

They’ve since rekindled a long-lost seafaring tradition across the Polynesian islands, and have set their sights on completing an audacious 60,000-nautical-mile round-the-world voyage that they began in 2013, all on an open-deck double-hulled voyaging canoe.

National Geographic has more on the story HERE.

Published in Offshore
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#MarineNotice - Marine Notice No 4 of 2016 advises of the risks inherent in the use of unlicensed electronic navigation systems and cautions against their use.

Unlicensed software and electronic charts may contain errors, resulting in inaccuracies in displayed information and indicated vessel position. Such unlicensed software should not be used for navigation purposes.

Vessel operators are reminded of the requirement to carry suitable nautical instruments and adequate and up-to-date charts for their intended voyages. All equipment fitted in compliance with shipborne navigational equipment regulations should be type approved.

The installation and use of unlicensed navigational systems and software on-board commercial vessels may invalidate a vessel’s certification and may also lead to the cancelation of a vessel’s certificates.

If in doubt, vessel owners/operators should confirm with their suppliers that their software is up to date and licensed.

Published in Marine Warning

#deadcow – Round–the–World Yachtsman and Afloat.ie reader Pat Murphy says he enjoyed our story about the weekend rescue of a cow by the RNLI in Waterford. Unfortunately, Pat and his wife Olivia related a tale where they came across another cow in the same area (above) that was not so lucky. 'We came across him/her about six miles south of Hook Head while on passage from Waterford to Padstow in Cornwall on August Monday last in our yacht Aldebaran', Pat told Afloat.ie.

'I reported it to Rosslare Coastguard Radio as a navigational hazard. It was so bloated I think that to make contact with it could result in a not very nice shower!' he said.

Published in Cruising
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#InlandWaters - Despite the threat of floods amid the current weather warning, the recent extended period of dry weather has meant that water levels in Ireland's navigable inland waterways are lower than normal for this time of year.

Where water levels fall below normal summer levels, Waterways Ireland says masters should be aware that their vessels may be at risk of grounding, particularly deep drafted vessels.

To reduce this risk, masters should navigate where possible on or near the centreline of the channel and also avoid short cutting in dog-legged channels and navigating too close to navigation markers.

Proceeding at a slow speed will also reduce 'squat' effect, ie where the vessel tends to sit lower in the water as a consequence of higher speed.

Low water levels will also impact on slipways, with reduced slipway length available under the water surface and the possibility of launching trailers dropping off the end of the concrete apron onto the river/lake bed and causing damage to trailer, outboard motor or boat.

More slipway surface will also be susceptible to weed growth requiring care while engaged in launching boats.

Very dry riverbanks are more susceptible to erosion from vessel wash. Waterways Ireland asks masters to ensure they adhere to the speed limits and maintain a reduced wash.

Where appropriate by maximising on the number of vessels in a lock the total volume of water moving downstream is decreased. This also reduces the volume of water used.

Waterways Ireland asks users to be patient and wait for other boaters to share the lock rather than using locks for single passages.

Masters are also requested to make sure lock cycles are used for vessels travelling each way. Each lock cycle should take boats both up and down stream. All sluice gates and paddles should be shut when leaving a lock.

In addition, masters are reminded not to leave taps running at watering points or service blocks in the interest of water conservation.

Published in Inland Waterways
Tagged under

#HowToNavigate - A new revised edition of bestselling sailing guide Learn to Navigate continues its reputation as the accessible, no-nonsense guide for every boater.

Basil Mosenthal and Barry Pickthall take the reader through every step, from reading charts to understanding tides and much more, giving even novice sailors a sound practical basis in navigation.

Learn to Navigate is available now via Amazon and all good nautical booksellers.

Published in Book Review
Tagged under

#Navigation - The United States' National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has announced that it will cease publication of paper nautical charts in six months' time, according to Sail magazine.

Since the first maps charting the US coastline were published in the 1860s, the NOAA's Office of Coast Survey has been producing accurate and highly detailed charts to help all kinds of mariners find safe passage through American waters, from fishing vessels to merchant ships to cruising yachts.

But with the majority of ocean-goers now relying on GPS and other modern technologies, the use of paper nautical charts was seen as falling by the wayside by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), which took over the production of US charts in 1999.

Yet while printed nautical charts may now become the preserve of specialised cartographers like Bobby Nash, who designed a special classic chart for the Volvo Ocean Race finale in Galway last year, the NOAA will still be providing its ocean maps by electronic means via data or high-res PDFs.

Sail magazine has more on the story HERE.

Published in Cruising
Tagged under
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Ferry & Car Ferry News The ferry industry on the Irish Sea, is just like any other sector of the shipping industry, in that it is made up of a myriad of ship operators, owners, managers, charterers all contributing to providing a network of routes carried out by a variety of ships designed for different albeit similar purposes.

All this ferry activity involves conventional ferry tonnage, 'ro-pax', where the vessel's primary design is to carry more freight capacity rather than passengers. This is in some cases though, is in complete variance to the fast ferry craft where they carry many more passengers and charging a premium.

In reporting the ferry scene, we examine the constantly changing trends of this sector, as rival ferry operators are competing in an intensive environment, battling out for market share following the fallout of the economic crisis. All this has consequences some immediately felt, while at times, the effects can be drawn out over time, leading to the expense of others, through reduced competition or takeover or even face complete removal from the marketplace, as witnessed in recent years.

Arising from these challenging times, there are of course winners and losers, as exemplified in the trend to run high-speed ferry craft only during the peak-season summer months and on shorter distance routes. In addition, where fastcraft had once dominated the ferry scene, during the heady days from the mid-90's onwards, they have been replaced by recent newcomers in the form of the 'fast ferry' and with increased levels of luxury, yet seeming to form as a cost-effective alternative.

Irish Sea Ferry Routes

Irrespective of the type of vessel deployed on Irish Sea routes (between 2-9 hours), it is the ferry companies that keep the wheels of industry moving as freight vehicles literally (roll-on and roll-off) ships coupled with motoring tourists and the humble 'foot' passenger transported 363 days a year.

As such the exclusive freight-only operators provide important trading routes between Ireland and the UK, where the freight haulage customer is 'king' to generating year-round revenue to the ferry operator. However, custom built tonnage entering service in recent years has exceeded the level of capacity of the Irish Sea in certain quarters of the freight market.

A prime example of the necessity for trade in which we consumers often expect daily, though arguably question how it reached our shores, is the delivery of just in time perishable products to fill our supermarket shelves.

A visual manifestation of this is the arrival every morning and evening into our main ports, where a combination of ferries, ro-pax vessels and fast-craft all descend at the same time. In essence this a marine version to our road-based rush hour traffic going in and out along the commuter belts.

Across the Celtic Sea, the ferry scene coverage is also about those overnight direct ferry routes from Ireland connecting the north-western French ports in Brittany and Normandy.

Due to the seasonality of these routes to Europe, the ferry scene may be in the majority running between February to November, however by no means does this lessen operator competition.

Noting there have been plans over the years to run a direct Irish –Iberian ferry service, which would open up existing and develop new freight markets. Should a direct service open, it would bring new opportunities also for holidaymakers, where Spain is the most visited country in the EU visited by Irish holidaymakers ... heading for the sun!

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