31 December 2013 - Defence Forces - Naval Service Operations 2013 .

Maritime Security Operations

Provisional figures indicate that the Naval Service has completed 989 boardings and made 16 detentions so far in 2013 for alleged infringements of fishing regulations during their 1382 patrol days. The Naval Service patrol 220 million maritime acres of sea (over twelve times the land mass of Ireland) representing 15% of Europe’s fisheries. These figures include the detention of the world's largest fishing vessel from the Netherlands, a case currently before the courts. Fishing vessels from Ireland, United Kingdom, France, Spain, Germany, Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Lithuania, Belgium and Denmark were boarded and inspected in 2013. A total of 25 Fishing Vessels; from Ireland, United Kingdom, Spain, France and Denmark, were warned for 35 infringements, ranging from incorrect boarding equipment to electronic reporting infringements such as under recording of catch.

Specialist Dive Team Operations

The Specialist Naval Service Dive Team has been called out to 51 operations so far this year. Military Operations include underwater maintenance of Naval Service Fleet, sub-surface explosive ordnance disposal operations and berth clearances for visiting foreign warships. The Naval Service Dive Team has been involved in 14 separate Search and Recovery operations following requests from the Coast Guard and An Garda Sí­ochána, many of these operations lasting several days. The remains of three individuals have been recovered in the process of these searches this year and returned to their loved ones. This year the Naval Service Diving Section have been accredited as an International Diving School from IDSA (International Diving Schools Association), qualifying Naval Divers commercially in SCUBA and Surface Supplied Diving Equipment (SSDE).

Energy Awareness & Efficiency

In recognition of Defence Forces energy saving and reduction initiatives, the Naval Service received two notable awards, the Sustainable Energy Association of Ireland Award in the public sector category and the Association of Energy Engineers Award in 2013, the latter a world-first for a military organisation.


The continued exchange programme with the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) has seen the fourth group of RCN Officers embark on Naval Service vessels, honing their seamanship skills, primarily in the area of navigation. The exchange programme has also seen the first Irish Naval Officer S/Lt Shane Mulcahy complete a course with the RCN, qualifying as a Mine Clearance Diving Officer after a gruelling 12 month course. To his great credit, S/Lt Mulcahy was awarded top student on this course.

Other Operations and Taskings

The Naval Service was also involved in the following events and ceremonies throughout the year:

  • May -2013 - L.É. AOIFE rescue Norwegian couple stranded on their yacht 120nm south west of Ireland.
  • June 2013 - L.É. ORLA participated in the JFK 50th Anniversary Celebrations in New Ross bringing the Emigrant Flame to the final phase of the Ceremony see Flickr Set
  • July 2013 - First female to female handover of Command on L.É. AOIFE in September from one female Captain to another see Flickr Set
  • 2013 - L.É. EMER was de-commissioned after 35 years in the Naval Service.
  • October 2013 - 5 Naval Service ships took part in an International Fleet Review in Cork Harbour along with six international warships as part of the Naval Festival element of Cork Rebel Week 2013.
  • November 2013 - Our newest vessel, L.É. SAMUEL BECKETT, was floated out of its shipyard and is currently being out-fitted, with an expected arrival date is in the first quarter 2014.

The Naval Service has also supported numerous events throughout 2013 as part of the Gathering 2013 celebrations.

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Press Release Date: 31 December 2013

For Further Information contact:

Press Officer: Comdt. Denis Hanly

Tel: 045 49 2502 , 045 49 2503

Mobile : 087 2482130

E-mail: Press Officer

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