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Press Notice No: 92/00

Thursday, March 9, 2000


The Maritime & Coastguard Agency today announced that the Emergency Towing Vessel `Anglian Monarch’ (ETV) has been secured by the Agency for a second winter tour of duty beginning on 1st October 2000.

She will join the three existing emergency towing vessels based at Stornoway, Falmouth and Dover. All four Emergency Towing Vessels will now begin their winter service at the same time. The tugs will provide emergency towing cover to assist in the protection of the UK coastline from marine accidents and pollution.

The Maritime & Coastguard Agency have now used the ETV’s successfully throughout its first season with the ETV escorting vessels through both the Fair Isle channel and the Pentland Firth. The placement of the tug followed the Marine Accident Investigation Branch report into the loss of the MV ‘Green Lily’ off Bressay in November 1997.

The ETV has attended some 15 vessels including the MV ‘Donnington’ which broke down 4 miles north west of Cape Wrath in poor weather and gale force winds. The ETV later escorted the `Donnington’ into Ullapool. In November the ‘Anglian Monarch’ attended the MT `St. Kieran’, a chemical tanker with main engine problems in the Orkney area and the tug escorted her safely into Scrabster.

With a crew of eleven the `Anglian Monarch’ will cover the Fair Isle Channel and the Pentland Firth until 31st March 2001.

The vessel boasts an array of deck machinery including a telescopic deck crane with 1 tonne lift, and up to the minute navigation aids including use of the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS), utilising INMARSAT, a satellite communications system.

John Astbury, Director of Maritime Operations said:

“We are delighted to welcome back this very capable ship to the area when she restarts her operations in the waters around the Northern Isles. She is undoubtedly a valuable asset to the local area given the horrendous weather we have experienced in the Northern Isles throughout this winter contract, and she is a significant addition to the Search and Rescue and Counter Pollution assets of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency

“ All four vessels have now clearly demonstrated their usefulness in preventing and lessening the impact of pollution in UK waters, and the operational procedures and liaison developed with all our contractors over the preceding four years have contributed greatly to that success.

Notes to Editors

1. Following the announcement from Glenda Jackson, the then Minister for Shipping, in Parliament on the 10 February 1998 that the Government was satisfied that the trials carried out since 1994 by the previous Coastguard Agency, had demonstrated the capabilities of emergency tugs in preventing or lessening such risks, negotiations with tug operators have been taking place.

2. The establishment of Emergency Towing Vessels (ETVs) was one of Lord Donaldson’s recommendations in his report 'Safer Ships, Cleaner Seas' which the Government commissioned following the grounding of the "Braer" in the Shetlands in 1993.

3. A further study undertaken by Captain Belton RN, made further recommendations concerning the most appropriate locations for the vessels. Ministers decided that the Coastguard Agency should undertake trials of vessels, initially in the Dover Strait and the Minches. Latterly, a third vessel was stationed to provide cover for the Western Approaches.

4. The trials was completed at the end of March 1998, although a report of the trials and an associated cost benefit analysis produced by the Agency aided the Government’s decision to ensure emergency cover will still be provided on a longer term basis.

5. Contracts were awarded in March 1998 to Klyne Tugs (Lowestoft) Ltd for the Anchor handler/Salvage Tug ‘Anglian Prince’ to be based at Stornoway for the three winters (1998/9, 1999/2000, and 2000/2001), providing emergency cover for North West Scotland.

6. Further contracts for emergency towing vessels to be based at Falmouth and Dover respectively were awarded at the same time to Howard Smith Towage and Salvage Ltd, where the ETVs ‘Far Minara’ and ‘Far Turbot’, presently on contract to the Agency, will continue to provide cover for the Western Approaches and Dover Strait for a further five year, winter only period.

7. A further single year contract was let in October 1999 with Klyne Tugs (Lowestoft) Ltd for the vessel `Anglian Monarch’ .

8. The contractor Klyne Tugs (Lowestoft) Ltd. have provided this 1999 built 1485 tonne tug. At 58 metres in length and with a draft (depth below the waterline) of 6.8 metres, the `Anglian Monarch’ is a state of the art vessel ideally suited to the dangerous sea area it will now cover.

9. The ‘Anglian Monarch’ has two Niigata 6MG41HX main engines producing 11,400 bhp. She has a continuous bollard pull of 152 tonnes (160 tonnes maximum). She has two 4 bladed propellers with twin independently controlled “high lift rudders” and a 13 tonnes bowthruster and a 10 tonne sternthruster.

10. A tug review team is now working to review all Emergency Towing provision around the UK and is expected to report to the MCA Board on its findings during summer 2000.

Posted by: Mark Clark

For further details contact:
The Maritime & Coastguard Agency Duty Press Officer
Office hours: 023 8032 9401

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