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The Department of Transport advises ship owners, ship operators, shipmasters, harbourmasters and ships’ agents of the requirements for passenger ships engaged in the tendering of passengers between the ship and the shore and for the transfer of crew/technicians embarking or disembarking a seagoing vessel at anchor.

Passenger ship tendering operations, like those between a cruise liner and the shore, will normally be permitted in the summer period only and are subject to annual review. All tender vessels must comply with the relevant provisions of the Merchant Shipping Acts.

Full details of the relevant tendering types and requirements can be found in Marine Notice No 08 of 2024, attached below.

Published in Ports & Shipping

The Department of Transport advises that it has re-established a panel of surveyors to conduct surveys of small fishing vessels of less than 15 metres in length, to check for compliance with the department’s Code of Practice for such vessels.

This panel is established until 24 January 2027. Contact details for the panel can be found in Marine Notice No 07 of 2024, attached below.

Published in Fishing
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The Department of Transport has been advised by Geological Survey Ireland (GSI) and the Marine Institute that hydrographic and geophysical survey operations will be undertaken by INFOMAR in the Celtic Sea, Atlantic Ocean, western coastal areas and Irish Sea areas between 1 March and 30 December.

RVs Keary, Geo, Mallet, Galtee and Lir are expected to carry out survey operations in three areas: the Atlantic Ocean, west of Galway and Mayo; an offshore area north-west of Belmullet, Co Mayo and western coastal areas stretching from Galway Bay to Malin Head, Co Donegal; and the Irish Sea adjacent to the Ireland/UK border from east of Co Dublin to east of Co Wexford and in coastal areas of Co Dublin.

Meanwhile, the RV Tom Crean is expected to carry out survey operations in the Celtic Sea, south of the 30-nautical-mile limit, and potentially in the Atlantic Ocean west of Kerry, Clare and Galway west of the 30nm limit between 5 March and 25 November.

This vessel will be towing a magnetometer sensor with a single cable of up to 200 metres in length and a moving vessel profiler cable of variable length up to a maximum of 200 metres.

All vessels will display appropriate lights and markers and will be listening on VHF Channel 16 throughout the course of the survey.

Full details of the surveys, including maps, coordinates and contact details, can be found in Marine Notice No 06 of 2024 attached below.

Published in Marine Science
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The Department of Transport has been advised by University College Cork (UCC) that it intends to deploy hydrophones east of the Arklow Bank at four locations, and southwards to 15km off the bank and east of Gorey and Blackwater.

This marine science research aims to describe seasonal and diurnal occurrence of the cetaceans (the order of marine wildlife that comprises whales, dolphins and porpoise) present in the areas.

UCC plans to deploy four moorings with attached hydrophones on the seabed between the dates of Monday 5 and Saturday 17 February, subject to operational and weather constraints. The moorings will be fully recovered after three to four months for maintenance and then redeployed.

The hydrophones will be deployed in four locations in a latitudinal gradient, from east of the turbines at the Arklow Bank to 10km south of the bank, east of Gorey and Blackwater, Co Wexford.

A single vessel will be used for deploy the hydrophones: the Sharpshooter (callsign EI5069). Deployment operations will be conducted during the hours of daylight, during favourable weather conditions.

Throughout operations, the vessel will be displaying the appropriate lights and shapes as required under the COLREGS Rule 27(b). As Sharpshooter will be deploying survey equipment and moorings, the vessel will be restricted in its ability to manoeuvre, therefore all other vessels are requested to leave a wide berth.

Coordinates and a map of the survey areas as well as contact details can be found in Marine Notice No 05 of 2024, attached below.

Published in Marine Science

The first and second legs of this year’s Irish Anglerfish and Megrim Survey (IAMS 2024) will be carried out from Thursday 8 February to Sunday 3 March.

Surveys will be conducted to the West, South-West and South Coasts of Ireland by the Marine Institute in fulfilment of Ireland’s obligations under the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP).

IAMS is a demersal trawl survey consisting of approximately 110 otter trawls, each of 60 minutes duration, in ICES areas 7b, 7c, 7g, 7h, 7j and 7k.

Fishing in 2024 will take place within a three-nautical-mile radius of the positions indicated in Appendices 1 and 2 of Marine Notice No 03 of 2024, a PDF of which is attached below.

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

The Marine Institute requests that commercial fishing and other marine operators keep a 3nm radius area around the tow points clear of any gear or apparatus during the survey period.

Further details are included in the Marine Notice below.

Published in Fishing

The Department of Transport has been notified by Optic Marine that it will carry out works from Wednesday 10 to Friday 22 January off the coast of Ireland north-west of Belmullet, subject to operational and weather constraints.

The subsea surveys with remotely operated vehicles (ROVs), underwater cable repairs, cable recovery with grapnel and buoy operations will be conducted by the cable vessel Cable Vigilance (callsign FMQW).

Regular safety messages will be broadcast on VHF Channel 16 and a buoy will be rigged with white flashing lights.

As the work vessel will be restricted in its ability to manoeuvre during operations, it is requested that all other passing vessels leave a wide berth.

Coordinates and a map of the work area, as well as contact details, can be found in Marine Notice No 1 of 2024 attached below.

Published in Coastal Notes

The final Marine Notice of 2023 draws attention to and provides information regarding the International Convention for the Control and Management of Ships’ Ballast Water and Sediments (BWM Convention).

These 2023 regulations give effect to the Convention in Ireland and the specific compliance requirements that apply to particular vessels in the immediate term and with effect from 29 February 2024.

Under these regulations, all ships are required to manage their ballast water and sediments to a certain standard, according to a ship-specific ballast water management plan, and to carry a ballast water record book.

Ships of 400 gross tonnes and over are also required to carry an international ballast water management certificate.

The regulations apply to all Irish ships and to foreign-flagged ships under port state control.

For further details, see Marine Notice No 83 of 2023, attached below.

Published in Ports & Shipping
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The Marine Survey Office (MSO) of the Department of Transport is seeking applications from interested parties who wish to act as Recognised Security Organisations - RSO (Ports) for the period from January 2024 to 31 December 2028.

The authorisation will cover work as an RSO in relation to both Regulation EC 725/2004 on enhancing ship and port facility security and Directive 2005/65/EC on enhancing port security.

The closing date for receipt of completed applications is 3pm on Tuesday 16 January 2024.

Requirements and conditions for application are set out in the annex of Marine Notice No 82 of 2023, attached below.

Completed applications should be returned to the Marine Survey Office by post, or by email to [email protected].

Published in Ports & Shipping

The Department of Transport has been made aware of a Safety Recall Notice for AWG fire hose nozzles by the EU Commission’s Safety Gate rapid alert system.

The affected nozzles are type HS 10, HS 12, HS 16 and HS 20, country of origin Germany, marked with batch number “EN15182-1/3 2015” on the nozzle cap and “55” marked inside the orange tube.

They were most likely supplied during weeks 24 to 37 in
2015.

According to the EU notice, the product is defective and does not comply with the requirements of the Marine Equipment Directive or with the European Standard EN 15182- 1.

The notice adds that the nozzle is not robust enough to withstand working pressure of 16 bar and may burst. As a result, the user may be injured due to bursting or suffer burns when extinguishing a fire.

For more details on the safety recall, see Marine Notice No 81 of 2023 attached below.

Published in Safety

The Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage has issued a direction regarding activities requiring prior ministerial approval within the site of the proposed special protection area (SPA) for seabirds in the North-West Irish Sea.

As reported earlier this year on Afloat.ie, the proposed new SPA will cover over 230,000 hectares extending out from Dublin Bay to as far north as Dunany Point in Co Louth, and will increase Ireland’s percentage of marine waters protected under the EU Birds and Habitats directive to over nine per cent.

The list of Activities Requiring Consent relating to the SPA includes the following:

  • Reclamation, including infilling.
  • Blasting, drilling, dredging or otherwise removing or disturbing fossils, rock, minerals, mud, sand, gravel or other sediment.
  • Introduction, or re-introduction, of plants or animals not found in the area. (Consent is not required for the planting of crops on established reseeded grassland or cultivated land.)
  • Undertaking scientific research involving the collection and removal of biological material.
  • Any activity intended to disturb birds, including by mechanical, air, gas, wind-powered or audible means.
  • Developing or consenting to the development or operation of commercial recreational/visitor facilities or organised recreational activities.
  • Undertaking active acoustic surveys in the marine environment.

Observations in relation to the classification of the site may be submitted by interested parties and must be supported by scientifically based ornithological criteria.

Any objections to the classification of the site as a SPA or the Ministerial Direction may be lodged with the National Parks and Wildlife service.

The closing date for receipt of any observations or objections is 19 February 2024 and further details are included in Marine Notice No 80 of 2023, attache below.

Published in Marine Wildlife
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Irish Olympic Sailing Team

Ireland has a proud representation in sailing at the Olympics dating back to 1948. Today there is a modern governing structure surrounding the selection of sailors the Olympic Regatta

Irish Olympic Sailing FAQs

Ireland’s representation in sailing at the Olympics dates back to 1948, when a team consisting of Jimmy Mooney (Firefly), Alf Delany and Hugh Allen (Swallow) competed in that year’s Summer Games in London (sailing off Torquay). Except for the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City, Ireland has sent at least one sailor to every Summer Games since then.

  • 1948 – London (Torquay) — Firefly: Jimmy Mooney; Swallow: Alf Delany, Hugh Allen
  • 1952 – Helsinki — Finn: Alf Delany * 1956 – Melbourne — Finn: J Somers Payne
  • 1960 – Rome — Flying Dutchman: Johnny Hooper, Peter Gray; Dragon: Jimmy Mooney, David Ryder, Robin Benson; Finn: J Somers Payne
  • 1964 – Tokyo — Dragon: Eddie Kelliher, Harry Maguire, Rob Dalton; Finn: Johnny Hooper 
  • 1972 – Munich (Kiel) — Tempest: David Wilkins, Sean Whitaker; Dragon: Robin Hennessy, Harry Byrne, Owen Delany; Finn: Kevin McLaverty; Flying Dutchman: Harold Cudmore, Richard O’Shea
  • 1976 – Montreal (Kingston) — 470: Robert Dix, Peter Dix; Flying Dutchman: Barry O’Neill, Jamie Wilkinson; Tempest: David Wilkins, Derek Jago
  • 1980 – Moscow (Tallinn) — Flying Dutchman: David Wilkins, Jamie Wilkinson (Silver medalists) * 1984 – Los Angeles — Finn: Bill O’Hara
  • 1988 – Seoul (Pusan) — Finn: Bill O’Hara; Flying Dutchman: David Wilkins, Peter Kennedy; 470 (Women): Cathy MacAleavy, Aisling Byrne
  • 1992 – Barcelona — Europe: Denise Lyttle; Flying Dutchman: David Wilkins, Peter Kennedy; Star: Mark Mansfield, Tom McWilliam
  • 1996 – Atlanta (Savannah) — Laser: Mark Lyttle; Europe: Aisling Bowman (Byrne); Finn: John Driscoll; Star: Mark Mansfield, David Burrows; 470 (Women): Denise Lyttle, Louise Cole; Soling: Marshall King, Dan O’Grady, Garrett Connolly
  • 2000 – Sydney — Europe: Maria Coleman; Finn: David Burrows; Star: Mark Mansfield, David O'Brien
  • 2004 – Athens — Europe: Maria Coleman; Finn: David Burrows; Star: Mark Mansfield, Killian Collins; 49er: Tom Fitzpatrick, Fraser Brown; 470: Gerald Owens, Ross Killian; Laser: Rory Fitzpatrick
  • 2008 – Beijing (Qingdao) — Star: Peter O’Leary, Stephen Milne; Finn: Tim Goodbody; Laser Radial: Ciara Peelo; 470: Gerald Owens, Phil Lawton
  • 2012 – London (Weymouth) — Star: Peter O’Leary, David Burrows; 49er: Ryan Seaton, Matt McGovern; Laser Radial: Annalise Murphy; Laser: James Espey; 470: Gerald Owens, Scott Flanigan
  • 2016 – Rio — Laser Radial (Women): Annalise Murphy (Silver medalist); 49er: Ryan Seaton, Matt McGovern; 49erFX: Andrea Brewster, Saskia Tidey; Laser: Finn Lynch; Paralympic Sonar: John Twomey, Ian Costello & Austin O’Carroll

Ireland has won two Olympics medals in sailing events, both silver: David Wilkins, Jamie Wilkinson in the Flying Dutchman at Moscow 1980, and Annalise Murphy in the Laser Radial at Rio 2016.

The current team, as of December 2020, consists of Laser sailors Finn Lynch, Liam Glynn and Ewan McMahon, 49er pairs Ryan Seaton and Seafra Guilfoyle, and Sean Waddilove and Robert Dickson, as well as Laser Radial sailors Annalise Murphy and Aoife Hopkins.

Irish Sailing is the National Governing Body for sailing in Ireland.

Irish Sailing’s Performance division is responsible for selecting and nurturing Olympic contenders as part of its Performance Pathway.

The Performance Pathway is Irish Sailing’s Olympic talent pipeline. The Performance Pathway counts over 70 sailors from 11 years up in its programme.The Performance Pathway is made up of Junior, Youth, Academy, Development and Olympic squads. It provides young, talented and ambitious Irish sailors with opportunities to move up through the ranks from an early age. With up to 100 young athletes training with the Irish Sailing Performance Pathway, every aspect of their performance is planned and closely monitored while strong relationships are simultaneously built with the sailors and their families

Rory Fitzpatrick is the head coach of Irish Sailing Performance. He is a graduate of University College Dublin and was an Athens 2004 Olympian in the Laser class.

The Performance Director of Irish Sailing is James O’Callaghan. Since 2006 James has been responsible for the development and delivery of athlete-focused, coach-led, performance-measured programmes across the Irish Sailing Performance Pathway. A Business & Economics graduate of Trinity College Dublin, he is a Level 3 Qualified Coach and Level 2 Coach Tutor. He has coached at five Olympic Games and numerous European and World Championship events across multiple Olympic classes. He is also a member of the Irish Sailing Foundation board.

Annalise Murphy is by far and away the biggest Irish sailing star. Her fourth in London 2012 when she came so agonisingly close to a bronze medal followed by her superb silver medal performance four years later at Rio won the hearts of Ireland. Murphy is aiming to go one better in Tokyo 2021. 

Under head coach Rory Fitzpatrick, the coaching staff consists of Laser Radial Academy coach Sean Evans, Olympic Laser coach Vasilij Zbogar and 49er team coach Matt McGovern.

The Irish Government provides funding to Irish Sailing. These funds are exclusively for the benefit of the Performance Pathway. However, this falls short of the amount required to fund the Performance Pathway in order to allow Ireland compete at the highest level. As a result the Performance Pathway programme currently receives around €850,000 per annum from Sport Ireland and €150,000 from sponsorship. A further €2 million per annum is needed to have a major impact at the highest level. The Irish Sailing Foundation was established to bridge the financial gap through securing philanthropic donations, corporate giving and sponsorship.

The vision of the Irish Sailing Foundation is to generate the required financial resources for Ireland to scale-up and execute its world-class sailing programme. Irish Sailing works tirelessly to promote sailing in Ireland and abroad and has been successful in securing funding of 1 million euro from Sport Ireland. However, to compete on a par with other nations, a further €2 million is required annually to realise the ambitions of our talented sailors. For this reason, the Irish Sailing Foundation was formed to seek philanthropic donations. Led by a Board of Directors and Head of Development Kathryn Grace, the foundation lads a campaign to bridge the financial gap to provide the Performance Pathway with the funds necessary to increase coaching hours, upgrade equipment and provide world class sport science support to a greater number of high-potential Irish sailors.

The Senior and Academy teams of the Performance Pathway are supported with the provision of a coach, vehicle, coach boat and boats. Even with this level of subsidy there is still a large financial burden on individual families due to travel costs, entry fees and accommodation. There are often compromises made on the amount of days a coach can be hired for and on many occasions it is necessary to opt out of major competitions outside Europe due to cost. Money raised by the Irish Sailing Foundation will go towards increased quality coaching time, world-class equipment, and subsiding entry fees and travel-related costs. It also goes towards broadening the base of talented sailors that can consider campaigning by removing financial hurdles, and the Performance HQ in Dublin to increase efficiency and reduce logistical issues.

The ethos of the Performance Pathway is progression. At each stage international performance benchmarks are utilised to ensure the sailors are meeting expectations set. The size of a sailor will generally dictate which boat they sail. The classes selected on the pathway have been identified as the best feeder classes for progression. Currently the Irish Sailing Performance Pathway consists of the following groups: * Pathway (U15) Optimist and Topper * Youth Academy (U19) Laser 4.7, Laser Radial and 420 * Development Academy (U23) Laser, Laser Radial, 49er, 49erFX * Team IRL (direct-funded athletes) Laser, Laser Radial, 49er, 49erFX

The Irish Sailing performance director produces a detailed annual budget for the programme which is presented to Sport Ireland, Irish Sailing and the Foundation for detailed discussion and analysis of the programme, where each item of expenditure is reviewed and approved. Each year, the performance director drafts a Performance Plan and Budget designed to meet the objectives of Irish Performance Sailing based on an annual review of the Pathway Programmes from Junior to Olympic level. The plan is then presented to the Olympic Steering Group (OSG) where it is independently assessed and the budget is agreed. The OSG closely monitors the delivery of the plan ensuring it meets the agreed strategy, is within budget and in line with operational plans. The performance director communicates on an ongoing basis with the OSG throughout the year, reporting formally on a quarterly basis.

Due to the specialised nature of Performance Sport, Irish Sailing established an expert sub-committee which is referred to as the Olympic Steering Group (OSG). The OSG is chaired by Patrick Coveney and its objective is centred around winning Olympic medals so it oversees the delivery of the Irish Sailing’s Performance plan.

At Junior level (U15) sailors learn not only to be a sailor but also an athlete. They develop the discipline required to keep a training log while undertaking fitness programmes, attending coaching sessions and travelling to competitions. During the winter Regional Squads take place and then in spring the National Squads are selected for Summer Competitions. As sailors move into Youth level (U19) there is an exhaustive selection matrix used when considering a sailor for entry into the Performance Academy. Completion of club training programmes, attendance at the performance seminars, physical suitability and also progress at Junior and Youth competitions are assessed and reviewed. Once invited in to the Performance Academy, sailors are given a six-month trial before a final decision is made on their selection. Sailors in the Academy are very closely monitored and engage in a very well planned out sailing, training and competition programme. There are also defined international benchmarks which these sailors are required to meet by a certain age. Biannual reviews are conducted transparently with the sailors so they know exactly where they are performing well and they are made aware of where they may need to improve before the next review.

©Afloat 2020