Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

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Displaying items by tag: IOM Steam Packet

#FerryNews - Views of the Manx public and businesses are being sought by the Department of Infrastructure, as it looks at potential changes to the Island's sea services.

A new document reports Manx Radio, to replace the existing 'User Agreement' is going to be drawn up, following the government's purchase of the Isle of Man Steam Packet earlier this year.

On the radio station, Infrastructure Minister Ray Harmer (click for audio) said similar gauging of people's opinions has been done before.

Published in Ferry

#FerryNews - Isle of Man Steam Packet has confirmed it will be ready for new laws designed to clean up shipping.

Under new laws, writes IOMToday, fuel will have to be cleaner and more efficient under a global directive to reduce sulphur emissions.

A report on the new laws state: ’The current global limit for sulphur content of ships’ fuel oil is 3.50% m/m (mass by mass). The new global limit will be 0.50% m/m will apply on and after January 1, 2020.’

For more on the story click here. 

Published in Ferry

#FerryNews - Manx Radio reports that tenders are now in, to build the road that would take passengers to and from the new vessel berth in Liverpool's Princes Half Tide Dock.

An Infrastructure Department is considering specifying the use of liquified natural gas and/or low sulphur diesel, in any replacement Isle of Man Steam Packet vessels.

These details are given in a series of Tynwald written answers (see related coverage). 

There is the indication in these answers of the Manx Government's arms length approach to running the ferry company which means there are some areas where the Infrastructure Department doesnt know specific details.

For example the detailed contractual agreement between the Steam Packet and the Mersey Docks and Harbour Company. 

Click here for more on this ferry berth development. 

Published in Ferry

#FerryNews - There have been concerns raised that the new Liverpool landing stage for the Isle of Man ferry will not be ready in time.

As IOMToday reports passenger watchdog TravelWatch has released a statement in which it states its ’concern’ at the tight timescale available to ensure the new Princes Half-Tide Dock is operational when the current landing stage deal expires at the end of next year.

The watchdog’s concerns stem from a lack of information regarding contingencies for any delays to the planning application process and what could happen if there are objections to the plans, given the need for the new terminal to be completed by spring 2020.

For more on this ferry development, click here.

Published in Ferry

#FerryNews- The Manx Treasury chief has put pen to paper to seal multi-million pound takeover.

IOM Today reports that the Government has completed a deal to purchase the Steam Packet Company.

Tynwald members overwhelmingly supported the £124m of what Chief Minister Howard Quayle described as a 'once-in-a-lifetime opportunity'.

Treasury Minister Alfred Cannan has now signed the formal agreement which will see control of the Island's sea services shifted to Government.

Mr Cannan says the move is aimed at providing long-term stability to the ownership of the Island's lifeline ferry operations.

Published in Ferry

#FerryNews - The Manx public should have the chance to share in the fortunes of the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company in the years to come.

That's the view of Ramsey Member of the House of Keys (MHK) Lawrie Hooper, following Tynwald's approval of government's proposal to purchase the ferry operator last Tuesday (15 May).

Mr Hooper speaking on Manx Radio said the public should be given the chance to invest in the company.

To listen to the MHK click here to the radio's audio link.

Published in Ferry

#FerryNews - Tynwald, the Manx Parliament made history as it voted to take the Isle of Man Steam Packet into public ownership.

According to IOM Today, following a three hour debate, Tynwald voted by 23 votes to one in the Keys and unanimously in LegCo to acquire the ferry company for £124.3m.

The only member to vote against was LibVan leader Kate Beecroft.

Under the deal, negotiated between Treasury and the Packet’s bank and hedge fund owners, government will acquire a 100% shareholding of parent company MIOM Ltd using £124.3m of cash reserves.

Some £76m will appear in the accounts as a loan.

Government will look at options to restructure that loan.

For further reading on the decision to acquire the ferry operator, click here.

Published in Ferry

#FerryNews - A state-owned Isle of Man Steam Packet would be better for passengers as well as the economy, the Manx Chief Minister believes.

Howard Quayle speaking on Manx Radio has advocated a government takeover of the company since he first stood for the House of Keys in 2011.

Tynwald will be asked on Tuesday to approve the use of reserves to purchase the Steam Packet at a cost of £124 million.

Mr Quayle says the deal will safeguard the Island's 'strategic sea services'.

To hear the Manx minister's comments on the topic, click here for the audio link.

Published in Ferry

#FerryNews - A shipping line that was set up by a businessman as a planned rival to the Isle of Man Steam Packet has poured scorn over the Manx government’s takeover plan.

As IOM Today reports, Kurt Buchholz founded the Ellan Vannin Line in 2013 in an attempt to launch a roll-on, roll-off daily cargo service between Douglas and Heysham.

But without government support, and no ship, it never got off the ground. He stood as a House of Keys candidate in Douglas Central in the 2016 general election.

Reacting to the announcement of the government's planned £124m deal to buy the Steam Packet, he said: ’The Steam Packet ships are close to scrap value with their age, about £15m.

For more on the story, click here.

Published in Ferry

#FerryNews - The main Isle of Man Steam Packet Company ferry, Ben-my-Chree departed Douglas for Merseyside where yesterday the ropax entered dry-dock in Birkenhead for its regulatory overhaul.

According to the operator, the ferry will undergo a scheduled three-week dry-docking which Afloat adds is taking place at marine engineering firm Cammell Laird. 

During the overhaul the chartered in freight-only MV Arrow will provide freight services.

As for ferry passenger services, fast craft Manannan will operate according to the schedule published last autumn.

Until May 8, sailings are scheduled to depart Douglas for Heysham at 08.00 and for Liverpool at 15.30, with the return sailings departing Heysham at 12.00 and Liverpool at 19.30. The only exceptions will be today (April 18) and April 25 when Manannan will operate the Belfast route instead of Heysham.

A coach service will be provided at Heysham to transfer foot passengers to and from Lancaster railway station.

Chief Executive Mark Woodward said: ‘It is a regulatory requirement that Ben-my-Chree undergoes a technical overhaul.

‘This does mean the vessel is unavailable for three weeks, requiring some changes to our sailings during this period. We published Manannan’s revised schedule last autumn to give as much notice as possible and will assist foot passengers travelling onwards, via Heysham, by providing a coach to and from Lancaster station.

‘Freight services will be provided by MV Arrow, once again underlining the value to the Island of the significant investment we are making to retain the vessel.

‘Ben-my-Chree will be back soon, fully serviced and ready for another busy summer season.’

Published in Ferry
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Royal National Lifeboat Institute (RNLI) in Ireland Information

The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) is a charity to save lives at sea in the waters of UK and Ireland. Funded principally by legacies and donations, the RNLI operates a fleet of lifeboats, crewed by volunteers, based at a range of coastal and inland waters stations. Working closely with UK and Ireland Coastguards, RNLI crews are available to launch at short notice to assist people and vessels in difficulties.

RNLI was founded in 1824 and is based in Poole, Dorset. The organisation raised €210m in funds in 2019, spending €200m on lifesaving activities and water safety education. RNLI also provides a beach lifeguard service in the UK and has recently developed an International drowning prevention strategy, partnering with other organisations and governments to make drowning prevention a global priority.

Irish Lifeboat Stations

There are 46 lifeboat stations on the island of Ireland, with an operational base in Swords, Co Dublin. Irish RNLI crews are tasked through a paging system instigated by the Irish Coast Guard which can task a range of rescue resources depending on the nature of the emergency.

Famous Irish Lifeboat Rescues

Irish Lifeboats have participated in many rescues, perhaps the most famous of which was the rescue of the crew of the Daunt Rock lightship off Cork Harbour by the Ballycotton lifeboat in 1936. Spending almost 50 hours at sea, the lifeboat stood by the drifting lightship until the proximity to the Daunt Rock forced the coxswain to get alongside and successfully rescue the lightship's crew.

32 Irish lifeboat crew have been lost in rescue missions, including the 15 crew of the Kingstown (now Dun Laoghaire) lifeboat which capsized while attempting to rescue the crew of the SS Palme on Christmas Eve 1895.


While the number of callouts to lifeboat stations varies from year to year, Howth Lifeboat station has aggregated more 'shouts' in recent years than other stations, averaging just over 60 a year.

Stations with an offshore lifeboat have a full-time mechanic, while some have a full-time coxswain. However, most lifeboat crews are volunteers.

There are 46 lifeboat stations on the island of Ireland

32 Irish lifeboat crew have been lost in rescue missions, including the 15 crew of the Kingstown (now Dun Laoghaire) lifeboat which capsized while attempting to rescue the crew of the SS Palme on Christmas Eve 1895

In 2019, 8,941 lifeboat launches saved 342 lives across the RNLI fleet.

The Irish fleet is a mixture of inshore and all-weather (offshore) craft. The offshore lifeboats, which range from 17m to 12m in length are either moored afloat, launched down a slipway or are towed into the sea on a trailer and launched. The inshore boats are either rigid or non-rigid inflatables.

The Irish Coast Guard in the Republic of Ireland or the UK Coastguard in Northern Ireland task lifeboats when an emergency call is received, through any of the recognised systems. These include 999/112 phone calls, Mayday/PanPan calls on VHF, a signal from an emergency position indicating radio beacon (EPIRB) or distress signals.

The Irish Coast Guard is the government agency responsible for the response to, and co-ordination of, maritime accidents which require search and rescue operations. To carry out their task the Coast Guard calls on their own resources – Coast Guard units manned by volunteers and contracted helicopters, as well as "declared resources" - RNLI lifeboats and crews. While lifeboats conduct the operation, the coordination is provided by the Coast Guard.

A lifeboat coxswain (pronounced cox'n) is the skipper or master of the lifeboat.

RNLI Lifeboat crews are required to follow a particular development plan that covers a pre-agreed range of skills necessary to complete particular tasks. These skills and tasks form part of the competence-based training that is delivered both locally and at the RNLI's Lifeboat College in Poole, Dorset


While the RNLI is dependent on donations and legacies for funding, they also need volunteer crew and fund-raisers.

© Afloat 2020

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