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Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

Displaying items by tag: Accessibility

The Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport (DTTAS) recently published new accessibility guidelines designed as a support to all those involved in providing maritime passenger transport services.

This includes passenger vessel owners and operators, port operators and local authorities, as well as Government departments with a statutory remit in relation to maritime passenger transport services.

The advice given covers all aspects of a journey, including:

  • Advice on providing accessible information for planning the journey
  • Improving access on board vessels
  • Making shore-side facilities accessible
  • Disability awareness training for staff
  • Improving communications with passengers

The full guidelines are available from the Government website as a PDF to read or download HERE.

Published in Ferry

#Angling - Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Denis Naughten has officially launched new angling developments at the Golden Mile in Athlone, Co Westmeath and at Lough Acalla in Co Galway.

These works were completed under the National Strategy for Angling Development (NSAD) and greatly enhance the angling infrastructure in both counties, according to Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI).

The wheelchair-accessible angling structures at Lough Acalla comprise floating fishing stands and a connecting bridge to provide for all-year-round fishing.

Total investment in Athlone amounted to €73,000 to build up access causeways, remove old wooden structures and design, manufacture and fit the three floating angling stands.

IFI worked with the local angling clubs, the relevant statutory agencies and contractors in the design and construction of these new floating platforms.

The works form part of a wider development at the Burgess Park and Meadows area, involving Athlone Municipal District, Waterways Ireland, National Parks and Wildlife Service, ESB Fisheries and Athlone Midlands and District Anglers.

At the Lough Acalla development, two large old wooden angling stands were removed and replaced with a fixed concrete catwalk and floating galvanised angling stand.

A new path was also constructed from a set down area in the existing carpark, providing wheelchair accessibility to the entire structure.

IFI worked with anglers and landowners throughout the project to deliver this key piece of infrastructure at this important trout fishery.

Together with other development works at Emlaghroyan, the total development in this River Suck project was €87,000.

Speaking in Athlone after the ribbon-cutting ceremony, Minister Naughten said: “These much needed new developments will add considerably to the angling infrastructure in the upper and mid-Shannon regions, ensuring accessibility for all anglers.

“This investment will play a key role in boosting tourism to the Lakelands region and ensure our valuable natural resources are protected.”

Published in Angling

#MarineNotice - A recent Marine Notice from the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport (DTTAS) raises importance of maintenance as highlighted in the MCIB report into the scuttling of fishing vessel Jeanette Roberta in Glandore Harbour in late 2011.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the prawn boat was returning to port on 11 December 2011 when the skipper had difficulty switching the helm from auto-pilot to manual due to a known issue with "sticky solenoids". The boat subsequently veered off course without warning and was holed on rocks on Adam's Island.

The official report into the incident castigated the owner/skipper for continuing to sail the vessel with persistent navigation issues - and Marine Notice No 04 of 2013 reminds all fishing vessel operators to ensure that deficiencies with their vessels are rectified without delay.

It is the responsibility of the owner to ensure that a vessel is maintained and operated at all times in accordance with the requirements of the agreed Code of Practice. Owners of all vessels also have a legal obligation to operate their vessels in accordance with the law.

Meanwhile, the latest Marine Notice is directed at passenger vessel owners and operators - encouraging them to continue voluntary efforts to improve accessibility on their vessels.

A new questionnaire has been made available to inform the DTTAS about the extent of accessibility improvements introduced to maritime passenger transport services in the State.

Full details are included in Marine Notice No 05 of 2013, a PDF of which is available to read or download HERE.

Published in News Update

The Half Ton Class was created by the Offshore Racing Council for boats within the racing band not exceeding 22'-0". The ORC decided that the rule should "....permit the development of seaworthy offshore racing yachts...The Council will endeavour to protect the majority of the existing IOR fleet from rapid obsolescence caused by ....developments which produce increased performance without corresponding changes in ratings..."

When first introduced the IOR rule was perfectly adequate for rating boats in existence at that time. However yacht designers naturally examined the rule to seize upon any advantage they could find, the most noticeable of which has been a reduction in displacement and a return to fractional rigs.

After 1993, when the IOR Mk.III rule reached it termination due to lack of people building new boats, the rule was replaced by the CHS (Channel) Handicap system which in turn developed into the IRC system now used.

The IRC handicap system operates by a secret formula which tries to develop boats which are 'Cruising type' of relatively heavy boats with good internal accommodation. It tends to penalise boats with excessive stability or excessive sail area.

Competitions

The most significant events for the Half Ton Class has been the annual Half Ton Cup which was sailed under the IOR rules until 1993. More recently this has been replaced with the Half Ton Classics Cup. The venue of the event moved from continent to continent with over-representation on French or British ports. In later years the event is held biennially. Initially, it was proposed to hold events in Ireland, Britain and France by rotation. However, it was the Belgians who took the ball and ran with it. The Class is now managed from Belgium. 

At A Glance – Half Ton Classics Cup Winners

  • 2017 – Kinsale – Swuzzlebubble – Phil Plumtree – Farr 1977
  • 2016 – Falmouth – Swuzzlebubble – Greg Peck – Farr 1977
  • 2015 – Nieuwport – Checkmate XV – David Cullen – Humphreys 1985
  • 2014 – St Quay Portrieux – Swuzzlebubble – Peter Morton – Farr 1977
  • 2013 – Boulogne – Checkmate XV – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1985
  • 2011 – Cowes – Chimp – Michael Kershaw – Berret 1978
  • 2009 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978
  • 2007 – Dun Laoghaire – Henri-Lloyd Harmony – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1980~
  • 2005 – Dinard – Gingko – Patrick Lobrichon – Mauric 1968
  • 2003 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978

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