5 April 2019

Tug Masters from Shoreham Port’s Marine team have been carrying out vital seabed levelling works in nearby Newhaven Port this week. Bed levelling is one of the many services the Port offer, alongside Diving, Crew changing, and operational services.

Seabed levelling is a modern-day dredging technique used in ports and harbours, by which a plough is towed behind a tugboat along the seabed to level high spots and ridges, moving the material to nearby low spots. The plough is fitted with teeth to cut into the seabed material and is very efficient in moving materials such as clay, sand, silt and gravel over short distances. This work is essential to maintain level entrances and ensure that berths are kept at their chartered depths.

Acamar, a new tug boat that arrived at the Port in September of last year, is fitted with a seven-tonne winch for plough-dredging. It is complete with onboard survey equipment to monitor the progress and survey the finished product if requested. You can view a video of Acamar’s plough in action in Shoreham Port’s canal bed here. Acamar’s sister tug, Adurni, is also fitted with these capabilities, providing excellent dredging services since the departure of the Port’s bucket dredger in the early 1990s.

The plough has proven itself as an efficient dredging tool this week, with Tug Masters Darren Todman and Alex Davey completing bed levelling in Newhaven, which is sited at the mouth of the River Ouse in East Sussex.  The trip to Newhaven was made even more exciting when Darren captured a rare video of a pod of 8-10 dolphins. The Brighton Dolphin Project identified the dolphins as bottlenose dolphins and advised that members of the public can log their own sightings here.

James Gray, Assistant Harbour Master/Marine Works commented ‘‘Our tug crew at Shoreham Port were thrilled to capture this footage of a pod of 8-10 dolphins while providing seabed levelling services to Newhaven Port aboard our new tug boat ‘Acamar’ from Monday to Thursday.

"With two tug boats now working as part of our fleet, we have increased our availability to assist clients with their requirements for seabed levelling, often working alongside Dredgers to improve their efficiency or post dredge to work the hard to reach areas and reduce any residual high spots. We look forward to assisting other Ports in the near future - and hopefully capturing more exciting footage to share with our local community and stakeholders!"

Dave Collins-Williams, Newhaven Harbour Master commented “I would like to say that Newhaven welcomes the Acamar on her inaugural visit and I am sure that Shoreham Port will continue to work closely and efficiently with Newhaven, as they have always done so in the interest of mutual cooperation. The Adurni has provided a very good service for many years and the addition of another vessel will ensure that service continues.”

More information about Shoreham Port’s bed levelling services, please click here. Alternatively, call +44 (0)1273 598100 or email jgray@shoreham-port.co.uk. To see more exciting behind-the-scenes Port videos follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. Or sign up to our new quarterly digital newsletter.

Category: Sustainability