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Displaying items by tag: Marine Notice

The latest Marine Notice from the Department of Transport advises that a survey to investigate the use of fibre-optic cables in site investigations will be carried out in the North Irish Sea next month.

This survey from 16-25 March is being carried out in support of ongoing research at the Irish Centre for Research in Applied Geosciences (iCRAG).

The equipment and techniques to be used include:

  • Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) using fibre-optic cables: A 1000m length of fibre optic cable will be placed temporarily on the seabed in order to carry out the survey. The position of the cable will be marked using surface buoys.
  • OBS deployment: Two ocean bottom seismometers will be deployed and will remain in position until retrieval at the end of the survey.
  • Sparker seismic profiling: This will be carried out as mobile work towing a transducer a short distance behind the work vessel.

The survey will be conducted by the RV Celtic Voyager (Callsign EIQN) and Fionn Mac Cumhaill (Callsign EIDN2). The two vessels will work close by each other and the latter is assisting with marine mammal observer work.

The vessels will display appropriate lights and signals. Mariners should note that seismic surveying using DAS equipment will be performed during daylight hours.

Further details including relevant coordinates can be found in Marine Notice No 08 of 2021, a PDF of which can be downloaded below.

Published in Marine Warning

The Loughs Agency advises that it will carry out the SeaMonitor-EU Interreg Project (Survey CV21003) from Saturday 27 February to Friday 5 March.

The survey is being carried out in the North Channel in support of EU InterregVA project SeaMonitor.

A total of 108 Acoustic Listening Stations (ALS) are planned to be deployed at different locations covering a total of 63km between Malin Head in Co Donegal and Portnahaven on the Isle of Islay in western Scotland.

The first ALS on the Irish side is located 0.5 nautical miles from Inishtralhull Island at a depth of 20m. On the Scottish side, the first ALS is located 0.5nm from the shore at depths of 20-30m.

The survey will be conducted by the RV Celtic Voyager (Callsign EIQN) which will display appropriate lights and signals. Operations will be carried out during daylight hours to facilitate a safe deployment of acoustic receivers on the sea bed.

Further details including relevant coordinates can be found in Marine Notice No 07 of 2021, a PDF of which can be downloaded below.

Published in Marine Warning

Mariners have been given notice of a series of geophysical surveys for the Dublin Array Wind Farm taking place between next week and early May.

The Dublin Array is a project on the Kish and Bray banks some 10 km off the east coast of Ireland, immediately south of Dublin.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the proposed Irish-German venture could see as many as 100 wind turbines generate power for more than half a million homes.

Fugro GB Marine Limited has been contracted for the geophysical surveys to characterise the offshore array and export cable search area, including exploring possible landfall options at Shanganagh Park and Poolbeg.

Operations across a total of four vessels are expected to begin next Tuesday 9 February and continue until Tuesday 11 May.

Details of the surveys and their coordinates are included in Fugro’s notice to mariners, which can be downloaded below.

Published in Dublin Bay

A collision involving a yacht and a tanker in August 2019 has prompted a reminder for boaters to brush up on the “rules of the road” for seafarers in the Department of Transport’s latest Marine Notice.

The 38ft yacht Medi Mode sustained extensive damage following the collision with the 88m chemical tanker off Greystones on the night of 23 August 2019. No one was injured in the incident.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the Marine Casualty Investigation Board (MCIB) report into the collision called on the Minister for Transport to alert recreational sailors and motorboat users to the need for “appropriate training” and compliance with international regulations on prevention of collisions at sea.

However, the two airline pilots who were sailing the yacht disputed the MCIB report’s criticism of their experience despite their lack of formal navigation qualifications.

Marine Notice No 05 of 2021 is available to download below.

Published in MCIB

The latest Marine Notice from the Department of Transport brings the attention of fishing boat owners, skippers and crew to the safety provisions of the Code of Practice for fishing vessels less than 15m length overall.

It follows the publication last month of the Marine Casualty Investigation Board’s (MCIB) report into an incident on the FV Kayleigh off Sheep’s Head in West Cork in March last year.

The vessel sank after a fire broke out in its engine compartment on the night of 3 March 2020.

Two crew with burn injuries caused by a fireball were recovered from a life raft at the scene and the vessel was abandoned, presumed to have sunk the following day.

In its analysis of the incident, the MCIB found that the crew’s injuries “may have been avoided if [they] had remembered to carry out the procedures for entering a compartment known to contain a fire”.

Marine Notice No 04 of 2021 outlines pertinent information for fishing vessel owners, skippers and crew including firefighting training requirements, and guidelines for fire detection and alarm systems on board.

The full notice is available to download below.

Published in Fishing
Tagged under

The first and second legs of the annual Irish Anglerfish and Megrim Survey (IAMS 2021) will be carried out from Monday 8 February to Thursday 4 March.

As with previous years, IAMS 2021 is a demersal trawl survey consisting of approximately 110 otter trawls (60 minutes) in ICES areas 7b, 7c, 7g, 7h, 7j and 7k off the West, South West and South Coasts of Ireland by the Marine Institute in fulfilment of Ireland’s Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) obligations.

The survey will be conducted by the RV Celtic Explorer (Callsign: EIGB) which will be towing a Jackson demersal trawl during fishing operations and will display appropriate lights and signals.

Commercial fishing and other marine operators are requested to keep a three-nautical-mile radius area around the tow points (indicated below) clear of any gear or apparatus during the survey period outlined above.

Further details of the survey, including co-ordinates of the survey stations, are included in Marine Notice No 03 of 2021, a PDF of which is available to download below.

Published in Fishing
Tagged under

The latest Marine Notice from the Department of Transport draws attention to the Merchant Shipping (Passenger Ship) Rules 2020 which were made law by Statutory Instrument on 15 December.

This new legislation provides a national regulatory regime for passenger ships of less than 24 metres in length and constructed of steel or aluminium on or after 1 July 1998 and engaged on domestic voyages.

Exempted from these rules are high-speed passenger craft, to which the European Union (Passenger Ships) Regulations 2019 (SI No 676 of 2019) apply.

The rules maintain an appropriate safety regime for such passenger ships following changes that took effect in 2019 in associated European Union legislation. They include safety standards and requirements in relation to ship construction, fire protection, life-saving appliances and radio communications.

A full briefing on the new rules is included in Marine Notice No 02 of 2021, a PDF of which is available to download below.

Published in Ferry

The Department of Transport has re-established a panel of surveyors to conduct surveys of small fishing vessels of less than 15m for compliance with the relevant Code of Practice, which was recently under review.

The panel was established three weeks ago on Wednesday 23 December and will continue until 22 December 2023. Contact details for all six panelists are included in Marine Notice No 01 of 2021, a PDF of which is available to download below.

Published in Fishing

The Irish Coast Guard has has upgraded radio equipment at a number of VHF network remote locatosn in recent months.

Following these upgrades, the table below sets out the detail of the new coastguard working channels that are now in operation:

Site

Radio Call Sign

Current Channel

New Channel

Howth Hts

Dublin Coast Guard

CH 83

CH 03

Rosslare Hts

Rosslare Coast Guard

CH 23

CH 05

Mine Hd Hts

Mine Head Coast Guard

CH 83

CH 03

Cork Hts

Cork Coast Guard

CH 26

CH 02

Bantry Hts

Bantry Coast Guard

CH 23

CH 05

Valentia Hts

Valentia Coast Guard

CH 24

CH 62

Shannon Hts

Shannon Coast Guard

CH 28

CH 64

Belmullet Hts

Belmullet Coast Guard

CH 83

CH 63

Clifden Hts

Clifden Coast Guard

CH 26

CH 03

Malin Hd Hts

Malin Head Coast Guard

CH 23

CH 05

Scalp Mountain

Malin Head Coast Guard

CH 85

CH 01

Glen Hd Hts

Glen Head Coast Guard

CH 24

CH 03

 

The remaining sites of Carlingford (CH04), Wicklow (CH02), Mizen Head (CH04), Galway (CH04), Clew Bay (CH05), Donegal Bay (CH02), Lough Ree (CH62) and Lough Derg (CH61) will retain their respective currently assigned channel.

A map showing the radio sites including the new channels and a guide to transmissing VHF distress alerts are included in Marine Notice No 61 of 2020, which is available to download below

Published in Coastguard

Ultra Deep Solutions will be carrying out subsea exploration activities off the North West Coast from tomorrow, Wednesday 16 December.

The work will be conducted a number of weeks, progress and weather depending, within the vicinity of 55° 19’N, 009° 41’W.

Vessel-mounted equipment, ROV and saturation divers will be operating from the MV Lichtenstein (Callsign C6DC6), which requests a wide berth from all other vessel due to its restricted ability to manoeuvre.

Further details are included in Marine Notice No 60 of 2020, which is available to download below.

Published in Marine Warning
Tagged under
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The Irish Coast Guard

The Irish Coast Guard is Ireland's fourth 'Blue Light' service (along with An Garda Síochána, the Ambulance Service and the Fire Service). It provides a nationwide maritime emergency organisation as well as a variety of services to shipping and other government agencies.

The purpose of the Irish Coast Guard is to promote safety and security standards, and by doing so, prevent as far as possible, the loss of life at sea, and on inland waters, mountains and caves, and to provide effective emergency response services and to safeguard the quality of the marine environment.

The Irish Coast Guard has responsibility for Ireland's system of marine communications, surveillance and emergency management in Ireland's Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and certain inland waterways.

It is responsible for the response to, and co-ordination of, maritime accidents which require search and rescue and counter-pollution and ship casualty operations. It also has responsibility for vessel traffic monitoring.

Operations in respect of maritime security, illegal drug trafficking, illegal migration and fisheries enforcement are co-ordinated by other bodies within the Irish Government.

On average, each year, the Irish Coast Guard is expected to:

  • handle 3,000 marine emergencies
  • assist 4,500 people and save about 200 lives
  • task Coast Guard helicopters on missions

The Coast Guard has been around in some form in Ireland since 1908.

Coast Guard helicopters

The Irish Coast Guard has contracted five medium-lift Sikorsky Search and Rescue helicopters deployed at bases in Dublin, Waterford, Shannon and Sligo.

The helicopters are designated wheels up from initial notification in 15 minutes during daylight hours and 45 minutes at night. One aircraft is fitted and its crew trained for under slung cargo operations up to 3000kgs and is available on short notice based at Waterford.

These aircraft respond to emergencies at sea, inland waterways, offshore islands and mountains of Ireland (32 counties).

They can also be used for assistance in flooding, major inland emergencies, intra-hospital transfers, pollution, and aerial surveillance during daylight hours, lifting and passenger operations and other operations as authorised by the Coast Guard within appropriate regulations.

Irish Coastguard FAQs

The Irish Coast Guard provides nationwide maritime emergency response, while also promoting safety and security standards. It aims to prevent the loss of life at sea, on inland waters, on mountains and in caves; and to safeguard the quality of the marine environment.

The main role of the Irish Coast Guard is to rescue people from danger at sea or on land, to organise immediate medical transport and to assist boats and ships within the country's jurisdiction. It has three marine rescue centres in Dublin, Malin Head, Co Donegal, and Valentia Island, Co Kerry. The Dublin National Maritime Operations centre provides marine search and rescue responses and coordinates the response to marine casualty incidents with the Irish exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

Yes, effectively, it is the fourth "blue light" service. The Marine Rescue Sub-Centre (MRSC) Valentia is the contact point for the coastal area between Ballycotton, Co Cork and Clifden, Co Galway. At the same time, the MRSC Malin Head covers the area between Clifden and Lough Foyle. Marine Rescue Co-ordination Centre (MRCC) Dublin covers Carlingford Lough, Co Louth to Ballycotton, Co Cork. Each MRCC/MRSC also broadcasts maritime safety information on VHF and MF radio, including navigational and gale warnings, shipping forecasts, local inshore forecasts, strong wind warnings and small craft warnings.

The Irish Coast Guard handles about 3,000 marine emergencies annually, and assists 4,500 people - saving an estimated 200 lives, according to the Department of Transport. In 2016, Irish Coast Guard helicopters completed 1,000 missions in a single year for the first time.

Yes, Irish Coast Guard helicopters evacuate medical patients from offshore islands to hospital on average about 100 times a year. In September 2017, the Department of Health announced that search and rescue pilots who work 24-hour duties would not be expected to perform any inter-hospital patient transfers. The Air Corps flies the Emergency Aeromedical Service, established in 2012 and using an AW139 twin-engine helicopter. Known by its call sign "Air Corps 112", it airlifted its 3,000th patient in autumn 2020.

The Irish Coast Guard works closely with the British Maritime and Coastguard Agency, which is responsible for the Northern Irish coast.

The Irish Coast Guard is a State-funded service, with both paid management personnel and volunteers, and is under the auspices of the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport. It is allocated approximately 74 million euro annually in funding, some 85 per cent of which pays for a helicopter contract that costs 60 million euro annually. The overall funding figure is "variable", an Oireachtas committee was told in 2019. Other significant expenditure items include volunteer training exercises, equipment, maintenance, renewal, and information technology.

The Irish Coast Guard has four search and rescue helicopter bases at Dublin, Waterford, Shannon and Sligo, run on a contract worth 50 million euro annually with an additional 10 million euro in costs by CHC Ireland. It provides five medium-lift Sikorsky S-92 helicopters and trained crew. The 44 Irish Coast Guard coastal units with 1,000 volunteers are classed as onshore search units, with 23 of the 44 units having rigid inflatable boats (RIBs) and 17 units having cliff rescue capability. The Irish Coast Guard has 60 buildings in total around the coast, and units have search vehicles fitted with blue lights, all-terrain vehicles or quads, first aid equipment, generators and area lighting, search equipment, marine radios, pyrotechnics and appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE). The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) and Community Rescue Boats Ireland also provide lifeboats and crews to assist in search and rescue. The Irish Coast Guard works closely with the Garda Siochána, National Ambulance Service, Naval Service and Air Corps, Civil Defence, while fishing vessels, ships and other craft at sea offer assistance in search operations.

The helicopters are designated as airborne from initial notification in 15 minutes during daylight hours, and 45 minutes at night. The aircraft respond to emergencies at sea, on inland waterways, offshore islands and mountains and cover the 32 counties. They can also assist in flooding, major inland emergencies, intra-hospital transfers, pollution, and can transport offshore firefighters and ambulance teams. The Irish Coast Guard volunteers units are expected to achieve a 90 per cent response time of departing from the station house in ten minutes from notification during daylight and 20 minutes at night. They are also expected to achieve a 90 per cent response time to the scene of the incident in less than 60 minutes from notification by day and 75 minutes at night, subject to geographical limitations.

Units are managed by an officer-in-charge (three stripes on the uniform) and a deputy officer in charge (two stripes). Each team is trained in search skills, first aid, setting up helicopter landing sites and a range of maritime skills, while certain units are also trained in cliff rescue.

Volunteers receive an allowance for time spent on exercises and call-outs. What is the difference between the Irish Coast Guard and the RNLI? The RNLI is a registered charity which has been saving lives at sea since 1824, and runs a 24/7 volunteer lifeboat service around the British and Irish coasts. It is a declared asset of the British Maritime and Coast Guard Agency and the Irish Coast Guard. Community Rescue Boats Ireland is a community rescue network of volunteers under the auspices of Water Safety Ireland.

No, it does not charge for rescue and nor do the RNLI or Community Rescue Boats Ireland.

The marine rescue centres maintain 19 VHF voice and DSC radio sites around the Irish coastline and a digital paging system. There are two VHF repeater test sites, four MF radio sites and two NAVTEX transmitter sites. Does Ireland have a national search and rescue plan? The first national search and rescue plan was published in July, 2019. It establishes the national framework for the overall development, deployment and improvement of search and rescue services within the Irish Search and Rescue Region and to meet domestic and international commitments. The purpose of the national search and rescue plan is to promote a planned and nationally coordinated search and rescue response to persons in distress at sea, in the air or on land.

Yes, the Irish Coast Guard is responsible for responding to spills of oil and other hazardous substances with the Irish pollution responsibility zone, along with providing an effective response to marine casualties and monitoring or intervening in marine salvage operations. It provides and maintains a 24-hour marine pollution notification at the three marine rescue centres. It coordinates exercises and tests of national and local pollution response plans.

The first Irish Coast Guard volunteer to die on duty was Caitriona Lucas, a highly trained member of the Doolin Coast Guard unit, while assisting in a search for a missing man by the Kilkee unit in September 2016. Six months later, four Irish Coast Guard helicopter crew – Dara Fitzpatrick, Mark Duffy, Paul Ormsby and Ciarán Smith -died when their Sikorsky S-92 struck Blackrock island off the Mayo coast on March 14, 2017. The Dublin-based Rescue 116 crew were providing "top cover" or communications for a medical emergency off the west coast and had been approaching Blacksod to refuel. Up until the five fatalities, the Irish Coast Guard recorded that more than a million "man hours" had been spent on more than 30,000 rescue missions since 1991.

Several investigations were initiated into each incident. The Marine Casualty Investigation Board was critical of the Irish Coast Guard in its final report into the death of Caitriona Lucas, while a separate Health and Safety Authority investigation has been completed, but not published. The Air Accident Investigation Unit final report into the Rescue 116 helicopter crash has not yet been published.

The Irish Coast Guard in its present form dates back to 1991, when the Irish Marine Emergency Service was formed after a campaign initiated by Dr Joan McGinley to improve air/sea rescue services on the west Irish coast. Before Irish independence, the British Admiralty was responsible for a Coast Guard (formerly the Water Guard or Preventative Boat Service) dating back to 1809. The West Coast Search and Rescue Action Committee was initiated with a public meeting in Killybegs, Co Donegal, in 1988 and the group was so effective that a Government report was commissioned, which recommended setting up a new division of the Department of the Marine to run the Marine Rescue Co-Ordination Centre (MRCC), then based at Shannon, along with the existing coast radio service, and coast and cliff rescue. A medium-range helicopter base was established at Shannon within two years. Initially, the base was served by the Air Corps.

The first director of what was then IMES was Capt Liam Kirwan, who had spent 20 years at sea and latterly worked with the Marine Survey Office. Capt Kirwan transformed a poorly funded voluntary coast and cliff rescue service into a trained network of cliff and sea rescue units – largely voluntary, but with paid management. The MRCC was relocated from Shannon to an IMES headquarters at the then Department of the Marine (now Department of Transport) in Leeson Lane, Dublin. The coast radio stations at Valentia, Co Kerry, and Malin Head, Co Donegal, became marine rescue-sub-centres.

The current director is Chris Reynolds, who has been in place since August 2007 and was formerly with the Naval Service. He has been seconded to the head of mission with the EUCAP Somalia - which has a mandate to enhance Somalia's maritime civilian law enforcement capacity – since January 2019.

  • Achill, Co. Mayo
  • Ardmore, Co. Waterford
  • Arklow, Co. Wicklow
  • Ballybunion, Co. Kerry
  • Ballycotton, Co. Cork
  • Ballyglass, Co. Mayo
  • Bonmahon, Co. Waterford
  • Bunbeg, Co. Donegal
  • Carnsore, Co. Wexford
  • Castlefreake, Co. Cork
  • Castletownbere, Co. Cork
  • Cleggan, Co. Galway
  • Clogherhead, Co. Louth
  • Costelloe Bay, Co. Galway
  • Courtown, Co. Wexford
  • Crosshaven, Co. Cork
  • Curracloe, Co. Wexford
  • Dingle, Co. Kerry
  • Doolin, Co. Clare
  • Drogheda, Co. Louth
  • Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin
  • Dunmore East, Co. Waterford
  • Fethard, Co. Wexford
  • Glandore, Co. Cork
  • Glenderry, Co. Kerry
  • Goleen, Co. Cork
  • Greencastle, Co. Donegal
  • Greenore, Co. Louth
  • Greystones, Co. Wicklow
  • Guileen, Co. Cork
  • Howth, Co. Dublin
  • Kilkee, Co. Clare
  • Killala, Co. Mayo
  • Killybegs, Co. Donegal
  • Kilmore Quay, Co. Wexford
  • Knightstown, Co. Kerry
  • Mulroy, Co. Donegal
  • North Aran, Co. Galway
  • Old Head Of Kinsale, Co. Cork
  • Oysterhaven, Co. Cork
  • Rosslare, Co. Wexford
  • Seven Heads, Co. Cork
  • Skerries, Co. Dublin Summercove, Co. Cork
  • Toe Head, Co. Cork
  • Tory Island, Co. Donegal
  • Tramore, Co. Waterford
  • Waterville, Co. Kerry
  • Westport, Co. Mayo
  • Wicklow
  • Youghal, Co. Cork

Sources: Department of Transport © Afloat 2020

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