Western HVDC Link: Pre-Lay survey in Irish Sea, July 2016

[Update – the work described below has now been completed.  This notice remains as part of the historical record of notices issued for this project.  Please refer to the most recent notice for an up-to-date record of the notices presently in force for this project.  This can be accessed via the project description page here.]

Mariners are advised that pre-lay survey work is due to commence on part of the Western HVDC Link route in the Irish Sea.  This survey work will be carried out over a distance of 120km in the North Channel, and is due to start on 15th July 2016.

A Notice to Mariners providing information about the survey work can be downloaded here.  A brief summary is provided below.

Pre-Lay Survey

A pre-lay survey will be carried out along the proposed cable route by the survey vessel Deep Helder.  The survey will consist of a visual and instrumental ROV survey of the proposed cable route.  The location and layout of the previously installed pre-lay mattresses and ther positions above existing cable and pipeline crossings will be re-surveyed during this work.

A map showing the general location of the survey work and detail of the latitude and longitudes of waypoints along the cable route are provided in the Notice to Mariners here.

Vessel details

Details of the vessel involved in these operations, along with its present location can be found on MarineTraffic.com via the links below:-

The vessel will be monitoring VHF Channel 16 throughout the operation.

The vessel involved in this work will be restricted in its ability to manoeuvre and other vessels are reminded to navigate with caution in its vicinity and pay strict attention to instructions issued to them by navigation authorities.

Exposed cable locations

There are several sections of exposed cable along the cable route including the planned cable crossing locations previously communicated through notice to mariners. These sections are currently being monitored by Guard Vessels which have been deployed locally.

Vessels are requested to pass at a safe speed and distance and fishing vessels are advised to remain a safe distance (approximately 1.5 nautical miles) from the areas identified. Guard Vessels have been deployed at each location to aid in monitoring the exposed areas and advise of safe distances locally.

The locations of these exposed sections are shown in Table 1 of the Notice to Mariners which can be downloaded here.

Burial of the exposed sections of cable are planned to commence in September/ October; updates of the associated vessels and works durations will be sent through designated notice to mariners in due course.

Guard vessels

Guard vessels will be stationed as appropriate along the cable route during installation and burial to ensure the safety of marine users.  There are presently 4 guard vessels on station along the cable route.  The areas being covered by each guard vessel are specified in a notice to mariners that can be downloaded here.

Notices to Mariners

The Notices to Mariners that have been issued for this project are:-

  • Deep Water Cable Survey, Irish Sea – this is the notice described above.  It was issued in July 2016 and provides notice of pre-lay survey activities along the proposed sixth cable laying Campaign in the North Channel of the Irish Sea.  The notice can be downloaded here.
  • Deep Water Cable Survey, Liverpool Bay – this notice was issued in June 2016 and provides notice of the survey activities and areas of exposed cable along the first tow cable laying Campaigns in Liverpool Bay.  The notice can be downloaded here.
  • Deep Water Cable Installation update (Campaign 3) – this is the notice described above.  It was issued in June 2016 and provides advance notice of the activities described above.  Cable installation campaign 3 is due to be carried out between July and September 2016.  The notice can be downloaded here.
  • Deep Water Cable Installation update (Campaign 2) – this notice was issued in April 2016 and provides an update on progress during March 2016 and a reminder of plans for cable installation campaign 2, which is due to be carried out between April and June 2016.  The notice can be downloaded here.
  • Deep Water Cable Installation (Campaign 2) – this notice was issued in March 2016 and provides advance notice of the activities described above.  Cable installation campaign 2 is due to be carried out between April and June 2016.  The notice can be downloaded here.
  • Route clearance, Out of Service Cables – this notice advises of work being carried out at 7 locations along the cable route to remove out of service cables that would prevent the burial of the Western HVDC Link cable.  The notice can be downloaded here.
  • Wet storage of cable – this notice advises of the surface laying of a 28km stretch of cable in temporary “wet storage” along part of the Western HVDC Link cable route.  The notice can be downloaded here .
  • Deep Water Cable Installation (Campaign 1) – this was carried out by the vessel Giulio Verne, starting in July 2015.  The most up to date Notice to Mariners can be downloaded here.
  • Concrete mattressing – along the cable route concrete mattresses have been laid at crossings of existing cables and pipelines.  A notice to mariners about the mattressing campaign conducted earlier this year can be downloaded here.

If you have any queries about the Western Link project, please contact Jim Andrews, Fisheries Liaison Officer by e-mail or by phone on +44(0)7908-225865.

Posted in AWJ Updates, Fishery Liaison, Western High Voltage DC Link, Western Link Undersea Cable

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