Ship: Coastal Assistant
Where: Limhamn, Sweden
Project: Wind farm
Who: Alex (text) & Erik (photos)
In June this newest multicat from the Waterweg Fleet left for Sweden. It is going really well here, after working out the bugs. The work concerns the installation of 49 concrete elements which are manufactured in Poland. It concerns a wind farm. Many more will follow. We work closely together with a Norwegian team, Eide from Hagesund.
The Norwegians are responsible for the installation of the elements. We from the Coastal Assistant are responsible for the anchoring. This is a burning issue here because the elements will be very close to an existing gas pipeline.
We therefore also work closely with the survey so that everything runs smoothly. We also work with a Danish team which is responsible for the barge which will arrive from Poland. We are the first to be called by the captain of the Eide Master, around 10 miles before the anchoring location. We then go out loaded with containers, fork-lift truck, hoses and pumps.
Then first transfer all items from the deck to the barge with four new elements and the Danish team. They then go and inspect everything in situ for the coupling of the anchor cables and the hydraulics. We then go to the main anchor and uncouple the two cables from the buoy which is on deck. We then have to wait until the barge is close enough to pass over the cables with the crane for coupling. As soon as this has been done we turn the barge into an east-west position as instructed by the client, and we position the rear anchor. Following this we instruct the Eide Master to leave for Limhamn. We then carry on with the remaining four anchors, so in total the barge is on six anchors. The Danes immediately start ballasting in order to make it possible to pick up the first element. We then go to Limhamn to help get the Eide 5 out of the narrow harbour, and sail to the barge carrying the elements. As soon as we arrive, we feed out two front cables and the two rear anchors, so that the Eide 5 can couple and ballast. Usually the following day we go to position in order to position the element after we have positioned the four anchors (in 20 minutes). The element is put in place and we run the anchors again and go to the barge carrying the elements. There we couple the Eide 5 again for the second element. We continue in this way until number four.
As soon as the barge carrying the elements is empty, we get everything ready for departure to Poland. This means that we run five anchors. We then transfer all the material back from the barge after everything has been ballasted, and we then go in with the Danes.
The next day we go out with the Eide Master to release the last anchor and to assist. Back in Limhamn we continue with maintenance on the Coastal Assistant. As stated earlier we had teething troubles but we solved these with the aid of the Technical Department from Den Helder. There you go, you are never too old to learn.
Apart from this we really enjoy ourselves here and would like to stay until the work is finished. This has also been recommended by our supervisor, because it works well like this. The prospects are good and the Coastal Assistant will probably go on to another job close by, a new wind farm, but then more than twice as big.
This was a brief explanation of what we do here.
To be continued…