Mariners are advised that shallow water survey work is due to be carried out close to the Western HVDC Link landfalls in Ardneil Bay and at Leasowe on the Wirral during July 2017. A notice to mariners about these operations can be downloaded here and is summarised below.
Shallow water survey work
A visual and instrumental ROV survey of the installed Western Link cables is due to be carried out by the vessel Bibby Athena in the shallow water in Liverpool Bay (up to 22.2km from the shore) and Ardneil Bay (up to 2.2km from the shore). The Bibby Athena will be supported by an Argocat all-terrain vehicle on the Wirral, which will survey the intertidal area from the start of the cable to the LW mark. At Ardneil Bay the Bibby Athena will be supported by the RIB Cougar, which will survey from the start of the cable up to 0.880km along the route.
The planned schedule for these survey works is:-
- Leasowe / Liverpool Bay – 7th to 15th July.
- Ardneil Bay – 12th to 21st July.
All dates are subject to weather conditions. Full details of the location and extent of this work can be found in the Notice to Mariners that can be downloaded here.
Information about the location of the vessel carrying out this work can be found at the Marine Traffic website using the link below:-
- Bibby Athena: Research / survey vessel | Call sign 2ICA5
The vessel will monitor VHF Channel 16 at all times.
The vessel involved in this work will be restricted in its ability to manoeuvre and other vessels are reminded to pass at a safe speed and distance. Fishing vessels are advised to remain a safe distance (approximately 1.5 nautical miles) from the areas identified.
Guard vessels have been stationed along the cable route during installation and burial to ensure the safety of marine users. They will remain in position until cable protection operations are completed to advise mariners of the location of exposed cable.
In areas where the cable crosses other cables and pipelines that are in service, the guard vessels will remain on station until cable protection has been completed in these locations (either through concrete mattressing or rock placement).
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 Guard Vessel areas and exposed sections are shown in Tables 1, 2 & 3 of the Notice to Mariners which can be downloaded here.
Notices to Mariners
The Notices to Mariners that are presently in place for this project are:-
- Shallow water survey work, Ardneil Bay & Leasowe – this is the notice described above. It was issued on the 29th June 2017 and describes the shallow water survey work that will be carried out at Ardneil Bay and Leasowe during July 2017. The notice can be downloaded here.
- Post lay mattressing operations in the Irish Sea – this notice was issued on the 11th May 2017 and describes the mattressing operations that will be carried out to protect the cable at service crossings in the Irish Sea and the Firth of Clyde. The notice can be downloaded here.
- Exposed cable locations: Update, Irish Sea North Channel, Firth of Clyde – this notice was issued on 9th May 2017 and provides an update on exposed cable locations in these areas. The notice can be downloaded here.
- Western HVDC Link: Cable Installation Campaigns 4b (Firth of Clyde) and 5a (Irish Sea) – this notice was issued on 9th May 2017 and provides an update on proposed cable installation work in the Firth of Clyde and the Irish Sea. It can be downloaded here.
- Debris – this notice was issued on the 15th March 2017. It informs mariners of the location of some debris that was found during the Pre Lay Grapnel Run along the cable route to the south of the Isle of Man. The notice 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 in 2015 can be downloaded here.
Earlier notices are all rescinded.