29 December 2014 - Naval Service Operations 2014.

Maritime Security Operations

The Naval Service as the state’s principle sea going agency continue to maintain a 24/7/365 presence in our maritime sphere of operations.  The Naval Service ensures the freedom of navigation and protection of international trade by sea, on which Ireland as an island state depends. It is actively involved in the international effort against narcotic smuggling, working closely with An Garda Siochana, the Customs Service and the Maritime Analysis Operations Centre in Lisbon.

In September 2014 the detention of the yacht Makayabella, and seizure of € 80 million of Cocaine was a significant success for the Naval Service. Additionally the Naval Service operates the National Fisheries Monitoring Centre and strives hand in hand with the Sea Fisheries Protection Agency to safeguard and manage our rich fisheries for current and future generations’ sustainable exploitation. The Naval Service with the Air Corps is assisting Ordnance Survey Ireland in the Base Lines Project which will map Ireland's sovereign claim to the seas around our island for generations to come.

Provisional figures indicate that the Naval Service has completed 912 boardings and made 10 detentions so far in 2014 for alleged infringements of fishing regulations during their 940 patrol days. The Naval Service patrol 1 million km2 of sea (over twelve times the land mass of Ireland) representing 15% of Europe’s fisheries. Fishing vessels from Ireland, United Kingdom, France, Spain, Germany, Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Lithuania, Mauritania, Belgium, Faroe Islands, Portugal and Denmark were boarded and inspected in 2014. A total of 31 Fishing Vessels had infringements recorded during inspections ranging from incorrect boarding equipment to under recording of catch. These infringements will result in Points being awarded against the fishing vessel.

Specialist Dive Team Operations

The Specialist Naval Service Dive Team has been called out to 43 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 8 separate Search and Recovery operations following requests from the Coast Guard and An Garda Sí­ochána, many of these operations lasting for extended periods. Additionally the Dive Team carried out diving operations on the “MAERSK NORWICH” as part of a joint Exercise with the Customs & Excise. This year the Naval Service Diving Section conducted two internationally accredited dive courses, qualifying Naval Divers commercially in SCUBA and Surface Supplied Diving Equipment (SSDE), as well as training combat divers from the Army Ranger Wing.

Energy Awareness & Efficiency

The Naval Service continues to implement energy efficiency policies which bring it significantly below its projection towards the Government’s 2020 targets for the public service. This is demonstrated in the deployment of the new Samuel Beckett class which have adopted improved propulsion technologies including the hybrid electric drive and tank stabilisation. During 2014, the Naval Service successful energy management system merited retention of ISO 50001 certification.

Other Operations and Taskings

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

Jan 2014

LE Aoife recovered a yacht adrift off Bere Island.LE Aisling acted as On scene Commander during Towing Ops for the MV HELLESPONT CHARGER.

Feb 2014

LE Aisling stood by the MV BERGONIA which lost power off Kedge Island.

May 2014

LE Samuel Beckett was commissioned in Dublin.LE Roisin participated in the Belfast and Dublin Maritime Festivals.

June 2014

LE Roisin participated in the Foyle Maritime festival in Derry.

July 2014

LE Niamh attended the Inter Celtic Festival in Lorient. An t Uachtaran paid a visit to the Ship.

September 2014

LE Niamh and LE Roisin detained a VOI(vessel of interest) MAKAYABELLA in a JTF operation approx 300 miles SW of Fastnet Rock. The VOI was found to be carrying 80 million euros worth of illicit drugs.

October 2014

NS Ships assisted Ordinance Survey Ireland (OSI) in progressing the Baselines project. OSI teams were landed on various points around the coast in order to place positional information plates on offshore rocks and islands.

November 2014

Our newest vessel, L.É. JAMES JOYCE, was floated out of its shipyard and is currently being out-fitted, with an expected arrival date is in the first quarter 2015.

Irish Maritime and Energy Resource Cluster- IMERC

The Naval Service strategic partnership with the Irish Maritime Energy Cluster during 2014 has seen the continued development of the IMERC Campus.


At present the Halpin research centre is involved in 16 projects, 6 of which directly involve Naval Service participation. Empirical quantification of this relationship is complex, however tangible benefits have been accrued in terms of experience and knowledge. Involvement by INS staff in projects under the Halpin umbrella has produced an increase in its understanding, effectiveness, preparedness and readiness in areas such as Maritime Security, Pollution Control and continent wide Information Sharing systems. Through a number of these projects, the INS have benefited from interaction with other institutions and companies, engaged in research into autonomous sub-sea systems and unmanned aerial systems.

Lt Cdr Tony Geraghty was conferred with a Master’s in Business Studies (MBS) at University College Cork. Lt Cdr Geraghty is the first Naval Service Officer to received funding from the Halpin Centre under the RemCap project which is looking at Cluster Analysis and how it can aid business development in the Maritime Sphere.

View the Best of the Naval Service 2014 Flickr Album

Press Release Date: Monday 29 December 2014

For Further Information contact:

Press Officer: Comdt. Seán Ó Fátharta

Tel: 045 49 2502 , 045 49 2503

Mobile : 087 2482130

E-mail: Press Officer