News Item

Thursday 20th July 2017 - Surveying the River Humber

Photo: A happy group of Members gather in the HES Building. (JGP)

The Humber, which drains one fifth of the area of England, and its feeder rivers the Yorkshire Ouse and the Trent are places of strong tides and rapidly changing depths. 2016 saw in excess of 32,000 ship movements on the Estuary, and over 16,000 Pilotage acts were carried out. Safe charting is in the hands of Humber Estuary Services (HES) who are responsible for over 145 square miles of Estuary. Channels have to be monitored frequently and re-surveyed sections of the River are available on the www within minutes of completion. A new paper chart of the River below the Bridge is published annually. Above the Bridge, new paper charts are published bi-monthly. The river is constantly changing, and the survey vessels can be seen completing their lonely work thee hours either side of high water almost every working day. Ten Branch Members were lucky enough to be invited to join HES for a survey with the surveyors in their new vessel Humber Sounder examining her very latest technology and getting familiar with the chosen section of the river. Estuary Services kindly chose an afternoon tide for us, so we could arrive at Alexandra Dock, Hull at a sensible hour. After a talk in the HES Building by Chief Hydrographer Mike Abbey, we were kitted up with safety equipment for the short walk across Dock property to Humber Sounder in Hull's Alexandra Dock. Soon we were out on the river intending to survey gas pipes in the Lower Humber with the multi-beam sonar equipment. However we soon realised it was too choppy for an accurate survey, so it was up into the R. Ouse to survey the reaches all the way to Goole, and then into the locks to check the build up of mud. This turned out to be a most interesting and exciting visit greatly enjoyed by those attending..

  • 28 July 2017
  • East Midlands Branch

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