New buoys for old at the Port of Ramsgate
Hydrosphere’s advice on navigational buoy replacements and upgrades has resulted in an order for the company from The Port of Ramsgate UK.
The visually stunning harbour entertains thousands of heritage visitors each year, attracted by its maritime museum heritage, famous Jacob’s Ladder steps and the 1812 lighthouse. Commercially, the port operates cross channel freight traffic with Seaborne Freight, saving lorry drivers 100km over existing routes and avoiding congestion and delays around Calais.
The port authority chose tried and tested Mobilis navigation buoys to replace No 2 Buoy in the main channel as well as two smaller inner channel lateral buoys..
The JET 2500 buoy is constructed around a galvanised steel central structure with 2 medium density polyethylene (MDPE) hull float sections, with the tower and top mark assemblies made from marine grade aluminium. The modular design allows for commonality of parts, therefore reducing maintenance, inspection, replacement and spares holding costs. Instead of large and costly maintenance vessels having to complete comprehensive repairs on older traditional style steel buoys, this newer modular buoy design means smaller vessels and crews can respond quickly to inspect and carry out any maintenance tasks required much more cost effectively
The two buoys marking the inner channel were replaced by the Mobilis T1200 which offers generous amount of buoyancy and a large visible surface area. As with other buoys in the Mobilis range the floats are rotationally moulded medium density polyethylene (MDPE), which is UV stabilised to retain its colour within IALA guidelines for in excess of 15 years. The modular design around the galvanised centre steel structure reduces maintenance costs and again is achievable with smaller vessels. These inner buoys now weigh only 180 kgs and can be handled by much smaller boats.
The Port of Ramsgate officially opened in 1850 and is unique in that it is the only UK harbour to be called a Royal Harbour with its foundation stone and obelisk, gifted by King George IV, affectionately known by locals as the ‘royal toothpick’. There are exciting plans to re-start passenger ferry services to Europe in 2019, capitalising on its prime gateway location.
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