Western HVDC Link: Deep Water Cable Installation Update, 21st December 2016

[Update – the information in this notice has been superseded by more recent notices.  The 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 place for this project.  This can be accessed via the project description page here.]

Mariners are advised that in early January 2017 the cable laying vessel Giulio Verne is due to continue with cable installation work in the Firth of Clyde along the Western HVDC Link cable route.  This update provides a brief summary of the detail included in the latest Notice to Mariners, which can be downloaded here.

Deep Water Cable Installation Update

The cable laying vessel Giulio Verne is due to install the next cable campaign between Ardneil Bay (KP0) and to a point north-west of Ailsa Craig in the Firth of Clyde (KP58), starting at the beginning of January 2017.

Laying operations will begin with the landing of the first cable of two cables at Ardneil Bay.  During this work the Giulio Verne will be assisted by the support barge LM Constructor and tugs.  Divers will be deployed from the barge.

After the first cable has been landed at Ardneil Bay the Giulio Verne will then surface lay it to KP5, where the cable will terminate for the time being.  Giulio Verne will then return to Ardneil Bay to land the second cable (again assisted by LM Constructor and support vessels) which will then be surface laid to KP58, near Ailsa Craig.  This cable will then be joined to the cable installed earlier this year through the North Channel.

Prior to the arrival of Giulio Verne at Ardneil Bay, the LM Constructor and support vessels will carry out preparatory works to allow the landing of the cables and their installation in the HDD conduits that run under the beach and golf course that were installed in early 2015 (see information here).

The cables will be buried by post-lay jetting along their route, apart from the shallow rocky areas close to Ardneil Bay and crossings of existing telecommunication cables in the Clyde.

The notice to mariners describing this work can be downloaded here.

Vessel details

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

Vessels will be monitoring VHF Channel 16 throughout the operation.

The vessels involved in this work will be restricted in their 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 free laid sections and the crossing sections.  Deployed Guard Vessels will monitor the exposed areas and advise of safe distances locally.

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.

To assist all mariners, a consolidated list of exposed cable locations has been compiled and can be downloaded here.

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 2 of the Notice to Mariners which can be downloaded here.

Guard vessels

Guard vessels will be stationed as appropriate along the cable route during installation and burial to ensure the safety of marine users.  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 are presently in force for this project are:-

  • Shallow and Deep Water Installation, Firth of Clyde – this is the notice described above.  It was issued on the 20th December 2016 and provides information about the cable installation in the Firth of Clyde between Ardneil Bay and Ailsa Craig which is due to start in January 2017.  The notice can be downloaded here.
  • Post Lay Installation Burial Works  – this notice was issued on 22nd November 2016 and provides information about the cable burial work for Campaigns 3 & 6 of the cable route which is due to be carried out between December 2016 and January 2017.  The notice can be downloaded here.
  • Rock Protection Areas and Exposed cable locations, Irish Sea – this notice is also described above.  It provides an update on the locations of rock protection areas and exposed cable locations which are awaiting protection as of the 22nd November 2016.  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 have all been rescinded.

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.

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