Monitoring the constant movement of the Western Australian coastline and nearshore seabed has been made easier with the commissioning of a new vessel by the Department of Transport (DoT).
DoT Manager of Spatial Information Rod Hoath said the new $329,000 hydrographic survey vessel Alec Hansen III had been custom built and featured modern electronic survey equipment capable of measuring 4000 soundings a second across a 100 metre swath.
Over the next decade the vessel will be used in monitoring surveys for coastline movements, new port site investigation work, charting surveys and monitoring surveys of major and minor port facilities along all parts of the WA coast.
Hydrographic survey work undertaken by DoT is vital to the maintenance of safe shipping channels, coastal development and improving safe navigation off WA.
Mr Hoath said the vessel, which replaces a smaller vessel commissioned in 2001, provided a significantly improved working environment for those onboard.
“The increased size of the vessel provides protection for the equipment and crew and a more stable working platform, allowing it to remain in the field for longer periods,” Mr Hoath said.
“The new larger vessel provides improved stability for survey operations and its custom built design incorporates extensive housing for the onboard computers, screens, power system and surveying equipment.”
Designed and built by Preston Craft in Wangara the Alec Hansen III is made from high grade aluminium.
At 9 metres in length and 3.4 metres wide the vessel is the maximum size that can be towed behind an appropriate vehicle without an escort.
The vessel is powered by twin 200HP Yamaha 4-Stroke outboard motors.
People wanting more information about DoT’s hydrographic survey work can visit www.transport.wa.gov.au/marine or contact 9216 8833.