Displaying items by tag: Coronavirus
In a statement issued yesterday evening (Wednesday 18 March), Inland Fisheries Ireland confirmed measures it has put in place in response to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic emergency.
“Following the HSE and the Government’s advice in relation to the delay of Covid-19, Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) has put in place a number of measures to maximise our capacity to continue to deliver our business and statutory services to the public,” the angling authority said.
“All main River Basin District (RBD) offices remain open with a minimum staff complement. IFI strongly encourages the public to engage with IFI using email, telephone and letter.
“IFI has requested that office-based staff, if possible, work from home. In the circumstances, there may be delays in replying to queries.”
It added: “IFI field staff continue normal operations bearing in mind current HSE advice. IFI staff may attend meetings remotely only (e-meetings, conference calls etc).
“Those wishing to purchase licences or permits, pay bills or undertake other financial transactions with IFI are requested to do so online, via telephone, bank transfer or by post.
“IFI has a 24-hour confidential hotline (1890 34 74 24 or 1890 FISH 24) through which members of the public may report incidents of illegal fishing, water pollution and invasive species which will continue to operate.”
Meanwhile, in the north of the lsland, Loughs Agency offices, including the Riverwatch Aquarium in Derry, were closed to the public from 5pm last Friday evening (13 March).
“The majority of services delivered by the agency will continue, particularly those undertaken in open spaces such as fishery protection patrols,” the cross-border body said.
“Anglers can continue to purchase fishing licences online or over the telephone +44 2871 342100.
“Anglers are also advised that the forthcoming North West Angling Fair, due to take place on 4-5 April, has been cancelled.”
Dun Laoghaire Marina remains open and fully operational amid the ongoing Covid-19 disruption, its management have confirmed.
In a statement, the marina’s general manager Paul Janson said: “We all need a safe port in a storm and in the current worrying times, we wanted to tell you what we are doing to help reduce the stress and uncertainty that you are likely going through.
“At the marina, we are listening to and following the advice of the HSE, the Dept of Transport and DLRCoCo. We are developing our Business Continuity Plan to maintain the best possible service and security should anything change with business as usual.
“At this time, we are open and fully operational. Our teams are out checking your boat, your fenders and lines on a daily basis. It is our hope that this service will be maintained throughout, no matter how severe conditions become.
“We understand that marina operational staff have been allowed to continue this work in Spain despite that country being in lockdown and boat owners excluded, we hope that avenue will still be available to us here in Ireland.”
Janson emphasised to marina users that they “may not self-isolate onboard your boat within Dun Laoghaire Marina. If you are self-isolating and you’re concerned about your boat, please get in touch over email or phone and we will keep an extra-close eye on your boat.”
He added: “Please also consider the health of our small team of marina staff. Only visit the office if it is absolutely necessary, payments for electricity, etc must be cashless at this stage.
“When you see staff out and about on the marina, please remember to adhere to social isolation/separation guidelines and let them get on with the important work at hand. If/when staff have to self-isolate because of the virus, it will have a knock-on effect on the services we provide. We are planning for this eventuality also.
“These are hard times; social isolation, we are slowly discovering, is not some mid-term break with the kids. Government announcements, daily press conferences are draining on our mental health. We will get through this; your boat will be waiting for you and the summer will be a memorable one.
“Stay safe, stay sane and see you out on the water again.”
X-Yachts GB & IRL has announced that its Solent Cup event originally scheduled for this spring has been pushed back a year due to the ongoing concerns surrounding Covid-19.
In a statement, the Danish boat builder said: “Taking into consideration the feedback from all of you and given the uncertainty surrounding the current situation with COVID-19, we believe it is pertinent and prudent to postpone the 2020 X-Yachts Solent Cup.
“Therefore, we are rescheduling the event for 2021. New dates 30th April to 2nd May 2021 — please pencil this into your calendars now and let’s get as many of you as possible joined up so that we make it a great event next year.”
X-Yachts also confirmed its production facility in Denmark remains operating as normal, with added hygiene measures. Outdoor viewings continue onboard new and brokerage yachts. However, new yacht deliveries will not take place on its premises for at least the rest of this year.
Hamble-based yachts can also be viewed remotely via FaceTime or Skype; email [email protected] for details.
“Our focus at this time is to try to maintain our service schedules so we are asking that all physical contact with our staff is reduced to a minimum,” the statement added. “We love catching up with our X-Yachts family but ask that you call or email with your sailing plans and news.
“If works are being carried out on your yacht, we will continue to send updates via email and are happy to discuss progress on the telephone. If you have works that are not yet scheduled and wish to talk through with an engineer, this again can be done via email or telephone conversation as normal.
“We are working hard to meet the relaunch schedules for all our service boats, but it is important to note that we are unable to bring forward any launches.”
In a statement, the lifesaving charity said: “The welfare of our volunteers, supporters and staff along with our ability to maintain our world-class lifesaving service is our priority.
“With this in mind, and given the current situation with Covid-19, we have taken the decision to close all RNLI shops, museums and visitor centres with immediate effect.
“Our lifeboat stations remain operational and we will continue to respond to those in need but will not be open to visitors.
“Our lifeboats will continue to launch to those in peril at sea.”
Due to the current situation regarding Covid-19, upcoming public events on the National Marine Planning Framework planned for Kinsale next Monday 23 March and Wexford on Tuesday 31 March have been cancelled.
Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government says its Marine Planning Policy and Development team are available via [email protected] to answer any queries in relation to the draft framework.
The closing date for the receipt of submissions for the public consultation on the draft remains 3pm on the Thursday 9 April.
The single-handed and two-handed fleets had been scheduled to set sail from Plymouth on Sunday 10 May in what is their 60th anniversary year, hosted by the city’s Royal Western Yacht Club.
In a statement issued on Monday afternoon (16 March), the RWYC said it aims to run the events “over a similar period in 2021”.
It added: “Since this will require compliance to the latest edition of Word Sailing OSRs for Cat 1 yachts, there will be a new Notice of Race, which will be issued in due course.”
Updated Wednesday 18 March to include details of the RWYC's official statement.
The RYA Northern Ireland says it is keeping developments regarding the COVID-19 virus in Northern Ireland “under close review”.
In a statement, the RYANI says it “will follow the guidelines set by the Northern Ireland Assembly and UK Government, and the advice provided by Public Health Agency Northern Ireland”.
“This continues to be a developing situation and RYA Northern Ireland will keep local clubs and centres fully informed of any changes.”
The RYA website is updated with its latest advice on Covid-19, which includes specific advice for affiliated clubs and Training Centres. The RYA will also update affiliated clubs via the RYA Club Room newsletter if and when this advice changes materially. Updates on the situation will also be provided via the RYA Wavelength newsletter.
As earlier reported on Afloat.ie, yesterday (Sunday 15 March) Irish Sailing called for “all organised sailing activity to cease with immediate effect” subject to review on Sunday 29 March, based on Government advice on social distancing and mass gatherings.
Comharchumann Forbartha Árann Teo issued a statement saying residents have overwhelmingly voted in favour of limiting travel to or from Inis Mór until Sunday 29 March.
In addition, islanders are asked to avoid travel to and from the mainland for the rest of this month’s containment period.
Irish Sailing continues to monitor and follow the HSE advice on Covid-19 on a daily basis. As always, the health and safety of our members and the sailing community is of paramount importance.
The Government has now asked bars and pubs to close from this evening until 29th March and we would advise that bars in clubs should conform with immediate effect.
Since the guidelines issued by An Taoiseach last Thursday, we have been in discussions with a number of stakeholders from both competitive and training backgrounds, and have concluded that social distancing is not only difficult to achieve onshore from an organisers’ perspective but also difficult to achieve at a personal level on the water.
For double handers and/or keelboats requiring two or more crew, it is not possible. Even for organised activities involving single-handers requiring safety cover (with two people in the safety boat), it is not achievable.
For this reason, Irish Sailing advises that all organised sailing activity should cease with immediate effect and will be reviewed on 29th March. We will continue to monitor Government announcements and update the advice accordingly.
Waterways Ireland advises all masters of vessels and water users that inland waterways facilities that are currently closed following on from the recent and ongoing flood event will remain closed until further notice.
The locks and bridge opening times on the Shannon Navigation will remain at winter opening times until Friday 29 March. Lock and bridge opening times will remain as weekdays from 9am to 12.30pm and Sundays from 10am to 12.30pm.
Waterways Ireland is also encouraging all masters of vessels and water users on all navigations to continue to follow the guidelines which have been provided by the health authorities regarding the COVID-19 outbreak.
In other news, the Green E Buoy at Goat Island on Lough Derg is now back on station.