Dublin Port Company has taken delivery of a new multi-purpose work-vessel designed to assist in carrying out many waterborne maintenance tasks within the Port and in the Bay area. The vessel was built by the Damen Group, in the Netherlands, at a cost of some €2.67 million.
The vessel was officially launched at a ceremony on Thursday 26th February in Dublin Port by Mrs. Helen Ahern, accompanied by her husband Mr. Noel Ahern, Minister of State at the Department of Transport.
The “Rosbeg” is named after a sandbank in Dublin Bay. The last vessel to hold this name was a tug which was operated by Dublin Port and Docks Board and taken out of service in 1983. This vessel is called a “Multi-Cat” and is so called because it was originally designed as a multi-purpose vessel (Multi-) having Caterpillar (Cat) engines. It is a general purpose vessel, capable of performing a range of tasks in relation to maintenance within the Port.
It is approximately nineteen metres in length and has a beam of about eight metres. It is propelled by two Caterpillar engines, developing about 960 horsepower, driving two separate propellers which are mounted within nozzles. This combination provides good power for towing or pushing and ensures that the vessel is highly manoeuvrable. It is rigged with a bed-levelling plough which can be used to level localised build-up of material, for example, near berths where ships propellers and bow-thrusters can displace material alongside. An articulated, hydraulic crane is fitted on deck which converts the vessel into a floating crane. This is very useful in a port situation as it can be used for a range of functions such as channel buoy retrieval, fitting of heavy fenders on quay walls, maintenance on quay structures, etc. The vessel is also fitted with internal tanks capable of carrying fuel oil or fresh water to ships anchored in the Bay. A large roller is built into the bow of the vessel so that heavy objects, such a buoy anchors, can be retrieved using the powerful winch on deck. A twenty-foot container can be secured on deck which can be used to hold equipment or store recovered oil in the event of an emergency such as fire response to ships in the Bay, oil pollution, etc. The vessel can also be used as a tug, either in the pulling or pushing modes, which will be helpful in manoeuvring some smaller vessels, barges, items of floating construction plant, etc.
This vessel is a valued addition to the modern fleet of vessels being operated by Dublin Port Company and is part of a €16 million investment programme to upgrade the range of equipment to provide better service to our customers. The Port has already taken delivery of two new, state of the art, pilot boats, which were built in Cork. Two new tugs are due for delivery in the latter part of this year which will be more powerful that those in service at present. These will facilitate the handling of larger vessels that can be expected to visit the port in the future