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#MARINE WARNING - The latest Marine Notice from the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport (DTTAS) advises on preliminary work on the East-West interconnector power cable in the Irish Sea between Ireland and Wales over the next few weeks.

Briggs Marine commenced pre-lay grapnel runs along the line of the cable route on Sunday 1 April, and this work will be carried out over three weeks from the vessel Kingdom of Fife (call sign 2BKR2).

This work will continue on a 24-hour basis, and the vessel will display appropriate day shapes and lights as required, with a continuous watch on VHF Channel 16 and DSC.

Complete details including co-ordinates of the work area are included in Marine Notice No 14 of 2012, a PDF of which is available to read and download HERE.

Published in Marine Warning

#LIFEBOATS - The latest marine notice from the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport (DTTAS) advises of construction work being carried out on Baltimore Lifeboat Station from today 5 March.

As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the works are part of a €2.6 million State-funded project to conduct essential remedial works at harbours across West Cork this year.

The works - which will be ongoing till mid-October pending weather conditions - will involve piling immediately adjacent to the foreshore on the north-east side of the building, and the deposition of rock to form an armoured breakwater jutting some 80m into Church Strand Bay.

No forseeable impact to mariners in the area is expected, but vessels are in any case requested to proceed slowly and with caution in the approach channel to Church Strand Bay and to give the works a wide berth to avoid wave-wash.

Further details for mariners are included in Marine Notice No 9 of 2012, a PDF of which is available to read and download HERE.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

#NEWS UPDATE - The latest Marine Notice from the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport (DTTAS) advises on a pipeline survey in the Celtic Sea next month.

PSE Kinsale Energy Limited will be commencing the survey of the 24" Gas Export Pipeline on 6 March 2012 using the Marine Institute vessel RV Celtic Voyager (call sign EIQN). The survey is expected to last 1 to 2 days, depending on weather conditions.

The survey will take place along the existing pipeline route in the Celtic Sea, between the shoreline at Inch Beach in Co Cork and gas platform 'Alpha'.

The RV Celtic Voyager will display appropriate lights and signals, and will be towing side scan sonar with cables of up to 200m long. A Radio Navigation Warning will be issued via the Irish Coast Guard (schedule Bravo, four times a day) prior to the vessel's arrival at the survey area. The vessel will also keep a listening watch on VHF Channel 16.

All vessels, particularly those engaged in fishing, are requested to give the RV Celtic Voyager and her towed equipment a wide berth and keep a sharp lookout in the relevant areas.

Further details for seafarers, including relevant co-ordinates, are included in Marine Notice No 7 of 2012, a PDF of which is available to read and download HERE.

Published in News Update

#TALL SHIPS - The organisers of the Tall Ships Races visit to Dublin are inviting young people to get involved by becoming 'trainees' aboard the fleet as they race from Spain to Ireland this summer.

The 18 ships (as of last November) are set to sail from A Coruña in northern Spain to Dublin on the final leg of this year's race over an estimated ten-day period from 13-23 August.

Young people across Ireland can now apply to be trainees on board the tall ships and take part in a voyage as crew. No previous experience is necessary.

Open information days are planned for this weekend from tomorrow (Friday) 17 February to Sunday 19 February from 12pm to 6pm daily at the CHQ building in the IFSC, close to the Jeannie Johnston museum.

Anyone that is interested in taking part or receiving further information can register at www.dublintallships.ie/trainees/

Meanwhile, organisers are also making funding available for the young people of the capital.

The Dublin City Tall Ships Funding will cover the costs of 25 trainees from Dublin to sail on the ships as they race from Spain.

Any youth organisation within Dublin City Council Administrative Area can nominate members of their organisation. Alternatively, individuals may apply and seek the nomination of a youth organisation such as a youth group or community group; school or college; sports club or Scouts group.

Details about this funding programme and other opportunities are included in the information bulletin attached below.

For further information contact trainee recruitment officer Michael Byrne at [email protected]

Published in Tall Ships

#MARINE NOTICE - The latest Marine Notice from the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport (DTTAS) advises on rock placement operations offshore at North Beach in Rush, Co Dublin and in the Irish Sea.

Works commenced on 19 January to continue for around 14 days, subject to weather delays, undertaken by DPFPV Tideway Rollingstone (call sign PHYR) which is operating on a 24-hour basis.

The vessel is transmitting an AIS signal and will be keeping a listening watch on VHF Channel 16 at all times. It is also displaying appropriate day shapes and lights.

The works - which involve the deployment of survey ROV and fall pipe - will restrict the vessel's ability to manoeuvre, so all vessels in the vicinity (particular fishing boats) have been given warning to give the vessel and her equipment a wide berth.

Complete details including co-ordinates of work areas are included in Marine Notice No 4 of 2012, a PDF of which is available to read and download HERE.

Published in Marine Warning

#MARINE WARNING - The latest Marine Notice from the DTTAS advises all seafarers in the Irish Sea between north Dublin and north Wales to give a wide berth to the hydrographic and oceanographic survey operation in the area this week.

The SV Bibby Tethra (callsign 2EGF8) commenced survey operations yesterday (Monday 16 January) from offshore at North Beach in Rush to approximately 16 miles offshore north of Anglesey. The survey is scheduled for seven days, subject to weather delays.

The vessel will operate on a 24-hour basis, displaying appropriate day shapes and lights during survey operations, and will transmit an AIS signal. The vessel will be keeping a listening watch on VHF Channel 16 at all times during the operations.

Survey operations will involve towing survey equipment up to 100m astern of the vessel along pre-defined survey lines, which will restrict the vessel’s ability to manoeuvre.

Details of the survey area are included in a PDF of Marine Notice No 2 of 2012, which is available to read or download HERE.

Published in Marine Warning

#IRISH HARBOURS - The latest Marine Notice from the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport (DTTAS) advises on construction works at Castletownbere Fishery Harbour Centre in Co Cork this week.

The works involve the installation of four steel piles - two in the navigation channel to the inner harbour and two to the west of Dinish Pier.

The works are being advanced by civil engineering crews working from a jack-up barge, which will display the relevant day signals and navigation lights in accordance with collision regulations.

For safety reasons, mariners are requested to proceed slowly and with caution in the approach channel to the Fishery Harbour Centre and to give the works a wide berth. Wave-wash from vessels should also be avoided.

These works are expected to be on-going until mid-December, weather permitting.

Complete details for shipowners, ship operations, shipmasters and seafarers are included in Marine Notice No 57 of 2011, a PDF of which is available to read and download HERE.

Published in Irish Harbours

#NEWS UPDATE - A recent Marine Notice from the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport (DTTAS) advises on the adoption of new international resolutions pertaining to SOLAS regulations and changes to the International Life-Saving Appliance (LSA) Code.

The changes are intended to establish new stricter safety standards for lifeboat release and retrieval systems, aimed at preventing accidents during lifeboat launching, and will require the assessment and possible replacement of a large number of lifeboat release hooks.

Both of these changes are expected to come into force from 1 January 2013 with a view to full compliance by July 2019.

The Maritime Safety Committee of the International Maritime Organisation has also approved new guidelines for the evaulation and replaceent of lifeboat release systems, in which the DTTAS will require fall preventer devises, or FPDs, to be fitted.

Complete details for shipowners, ship operations, shipmasters and seafarers are included in Marine Notice No 54 of 2011, a PDF of which is available to read and download HERE.

Published in News Update
#NEWS UPDATE - The latest Marine Notice from the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport (DTTAS) gives notice that the International Convention on the Control of Harmful Ani-Fouling Systems on Ships - known as the AFS Convention - will come into force for Irish-flagged ships on 20 January 2012.
Anti-fouling systems refer to paints or coatings applied to the hulls of vessels to prevent living organisms from attaching to them.
Currently all Irish-flagged ships of 400 gross tonnage and over are required to hold an Anti-Fouling Certificate, issued under Regulation (EC) No 782/2003 of the European Parliament and of the Council.
The new regulations mean that any Irish-flagged ship which holds such a  Certificate must replace it with an International Certificate, issued under the AFS Convention.
The new convention applies to three separate groups: any and all ships of 400 gross tonnage and over; all ships (including fishing vessels) of 24 metres or greater in length; and all other vessels.
Details of requirements for these groups are included in Marine Notice No 55 of 2011, a PDF of which is available to read and download HERE.

#NEWS UPDATE - The latest Marine Notice from the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport (DTTAS) gives notice that the International Convention on the Control of Harmful Ani-Fouling Systems on Ships - known as the AFS Convention - will come into force for Irish-flagged ships on 20 January 2012.

Anti-fouling systems refer to paints or coatings applied to the hulls of vessels to prevent living organisms from attaching to them.

Currently all Irish-flagged ships of 400 gross tonnage and over are required to hold an Anti-Fouling Certificate, issued under Regulation (EC) No 782/2003 of the European Parliament and of the Council.

The new regulations mean that any Irish-flagged ship which holds such a  Certificate must replace it with an International Certificate, issued under the AFS Convention.

The new convention applies to three separate groups: any and all ships of 400 gross tonnage and over; all ships (including fishing vessels) of 24 metres or greater in length; and all other vessels.

Details of requirements for these groups are included in Marine Notice No 55 of 2011, a PDF of which is available to read and 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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