NEIFCA Patrol Vessels

North Eastern Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (NEIFCA) owns and operates three vessels to support the delivery of its statutory duties and responsibilities. These include a main vessel, North Eastern Guardian III and two rigid inflatable boats (RIBS), ‘Bravo 1’ a 6.4 m vessel carried by the main vessel during  routine fisheries patrol work and a 6.3 m vessel ‘Humber Protector’ which is stored in Bridlington and deployed to support land-based operations throughout the Authority’s area. All three vessels are coded to MCA workboat standard and fully equipped to work in a stand alone capacity.

North Eastern Guardian III - Research/Patrol Vessel


North Eastern Guardian III 2010
North Eastern Guardian III 2010

North Eastern Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority (NEIFCA) operates a modern purpose built patrol/research vessel from the port of Whitby, North Yorkshire. North Eastern Guardian III is unique in her class. She has been designed and equipped to operate as a state of the art research/monitoring platform and is equipped for Acoustic Ground Discrimination, sub sea surveying and biological/benthic habitat assessment. To compliment the vessel and enhance her abilities she also carries a 6m RIB equipped with net/trap hauler. The rib allows near shore working of survey equipment, in locations that other larger vessels would not be able to access. The rib is also available for works independent of NEG III as she can be transported on her own trailer.

This document gives an overview of the vessels and their equipment.

The vessel's specification is as follows:

Vessel Name: North Eastern Guardian III

Callsign: 2AGN3

MMSI: 235059422

Classification: Lloyds

Registry: Small ships

Port of Registry: Whitby

Hull Type: Semi displacement

Hull Material: Aluminium

OAL: 26.3 metres

Hull Length: 25.35 metres

Registered Length: 23.90 metres

Length W.L: 21.75 metres

Max Breadth: 6.0 metres

Max Draught: 1.5 metres

Displacement: 55 tonnes

Speed: 26 knots

Engines: Cat C32 2 x 1000 KW

Passengers/crew: Max 12

Onboard Electronics

NEGIII wheelhouse
Figure 1: Wheelhouse and helmsman's position

In brief the standard wheelhouse electronics include:

Transas ECDIS Navigation system

Visionmaster ARPA Radar

Furuno Satellite Compass System incorporating DGPS

Simrad GN33 DGPS (Differential Global Positioning System) x2

Simrad ES60 Single Beam, Dual Frequency (38/200KHz) Sounder

Suzuki ES 1080 Single Beam Sounder (50KHz) for Headline Transducer use

CCTV and FLIR (forward looking infrared) camera systems with digital recording and playback

MF/HF SSB Radio with DSC and VHF DSC communications
Closed UHF communications and fixed on board intercom systems

Onboard Research Facilities

Office/skipper's cabin.

Dedicated dual screen research station with PC, camera controls and recording facility.

Laboratory/wet room sampling area with dual sink, fresh and salt water taps and wet draining floor allowing for a controlled and comfortable sampling environment.

Environmental Monitoring Equipment

YSI 6 Series Sonde

YSI Sonde and Data Logger
Figure 2: YSI Sonde and Data Logger

The YSI Sonde allows for the monitoring and recording of real time water column environmental data. At present NEG III is capable of monitoring the following environmental parameters: Temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen, turbidity and specific conductivity. The YSI Sonde is a modular system and probes for the monitoring of other parameters are available. The Sonde is capable of been deployed independently from other vessels and stations. Data can be logged automatically, for longer, static deployments or manually, for nomadic usage. Logged data can be extracted and uploaded to onboard PC facilities.

Airmar Weather Station

The weather station is a fixed piece of apparatus accessed via onboard PCs. It reports supplemental data parameters of air temperature, wind speed and direction, barometric pressure, humidity, wind chill and dew point.

Acoustic Surveying Equipment

The following equipment facilitates the vessels acoustic surveying capabilities:

Simrad ES60 Sounder

Figure 3: ES 60 screen capture
Figure 3: ES 60 screen capture

The ES 60 is a single beam, dual frequency sounder (38/200KHz). It is interfaced with an onboard PC and the wheelhouse monitor array. The ES60 is user friendly and allows for straightforward digital recording and file extraction of survey tracks. Settings are readily adjusted from the helmsman’s position. The onscreen display allows for viewing of the both frequency echograms on a split screen with a visible A-Scope and bottom expansion panels.

Olex (HT) 3D chart system

Olex system in 3D mode
Figure 4: Olex system in 3D mode

By using data from the vessels ES60 and GPS, the Olex system collects real-time data about the seabed, building into a realistic seabed view. Olex has both 3D and 2D Modes allowing for a clear understanding of the topography of the area. The 3D view gives a detailed picture of a particular area. Several 2D modes such as relief, depth contour and bottom zoom, highlight both flat and complex terrain. Olex also has the function which shows 2D profiles along transects of choice. The system collects and interprets sounding data as the vessel steams and can be set to calculate using one pass or calculate by taking readings over several passes. The Olex is a particularly valuable tool for understanding seabed features. Once mapped it is possible to view any area in both 2D and 3D modes at any time to revisit survey sites. Adjustments can be made to vertical zoom exaggeration in 3D mode to enhance features to assist in understanding bathymetry. The HT system allows for Olex derived real time hardness data to be gathered and recorded and shown on the 2D and 3D charts and images, providing for a true, all in one ground discrimination system.

Roxanne (GD-A) Seabed Classification System

Roxann data viewed in 3D GIS
Figure 5: Roxann data viewed in 3D GIS

The RoxAnn System takes and interprets data directly from the transducer to build up real time images of seabed hardness and roughness. This data can be used for effective ground discrimination. Data can be presented in either 2D or 3D using the Euronav chart system, enabling the RoxAnn to operate as a true stand alone system; or can be taken accross to the RoxMap software system. All files gathered can be exported to other GIS packages for further analyses and representation. Another significant strength of the RoxAnn system it that the data can be overlain directly on the Olex 3D system. When the two are combined it is possible to gain significant understanding of the seabed. Levels of customization exist within the system to enhance user friendliness.

Video Surveying Equipment

SeaBotix ROV

Seabotix ROV on NEG III's Deck
Figure 6: Seabotix ROV on NEG III's Deck

The Seabotix LBV300-S2 is a highly manoeuvrable mini ROV system. It can be deployed directly from NEG III and allows for high quality video colour image capture in depths of up to 150 metres through its own light source or monochrome images in low light conditions.

LBV pilot control unit
Figure 7: LBV pilot control unit

The ROV is equipped with a three-jaw grab to enable sample retrieval. As such the ROV is an invaluable tool for conducting inshore/seabed surveys, structural surveys and for the purpose of habitat classification and ground truthing.

Drop Down Camera Units

Drop Down camera still of a Yorkshire Coast Habitat
Figure 8: 'Drop Down' camera still of a Yorkshire Coast Habitat

The vessel carries a range of ‘drop down’ camera units which are capable of recording video images in colour or monochrome, dependant upon environmental conditions. The versatility of the cameras is the ability to deploy them in a short period of time, in most conditions. Image viewing is achieved via a small monitor and capture is by digital means. The systems also have the option of GPS overlay. The cameras are mobile and it is possible to deploy them from other vessels/stations.

Sonar Surveying Equipment

The vessel carries two side scan sonar systems one of which is small, portable and capable of deployment from a smaller vessel.

Tritech 2nd Generation Sidescan Sonar

SK sonar data viewed in Seanet
Figure 9: SK sonar data viewed in Seanet

This system allows for high resolution imaging of the seabed with a scan width of over 200 metres per side enabling (at 325KHz) for rapid acquisition of accurate survey data. The system is simple to deploy and recover and can be “swam” in most conditions. Real time survey data is viewable as the tow commences whilst all data is stored digitally. A DGPS input allows for accurate positioning of marks and features for further surveying by whatever method. Post processing can be carried out onboard, or more likely, ashore to develop detail mosaic images of sidescan tracks. This is achieved through the use of CODA Octopus and other mosaic software packages.

Starfish 450F Sidescan Sonar Unit

Starfish 450F Sidescan sonar Unit
Figure 10: Starfish 450F Sidescan sonar Unit

This system utilises CHRP acoustic technology providing quality imaging of the seabed in depths of up to 100 m with a scan width of 200 m. The unit is light weight (2 Kg) which means that it is very portable and easily deployed. The system is particularly valuable for assessing shallow, near shore and estuarine areas.

Biological/Benthic Sampling Equipment

Van Veen (0.1m2) Grab Sampling Equipment

Van Veen Grab being manoeuvred by onboard hydraulic crane
Figure 11: Van Veen Grab being manoeuvred by onboard hydraulic crane

NEG III is equipped with a robust Van Veen grab allowing for the taking of seabed sediment and benthic samples. The Grab area is a standardised 0.1m2 and is deployed and recovered by hydraulic winch to maximize effective sampling times. Samples can be stored onboard or analysed in the wet room/lab facility.

Trawl/Dredge Sampling and Research

NEG III facilitates the use of trawl sampling gear via four NSW split winches, hydraulic extending crane and gantry. This allows for efficient stern trawling/dredging operations. Various trawl method and dredges can be deployed from the vessel and types available are subject to project specification.

Lobster Pot/Trap Hauler

View of after deck with rib onboard and split winches uncovered
Figure 12: View of after deck with rib onboard and split winches uncovered

NEG III is equipped for pot and trap fishery surveys. A hydraulic hauler and large deck space enable significant numbers of sample pots to transported, deployed and hauled. 

After deck with deck insert plates installed
Figure 13: After deck with deck insert plates installed

The onboard wet room/lab facility allows for catch recording to be carried out in a controlled comfortable environment.Depending on the type of survey work undertaken the after deck area can be covered to maximise space.

Rigid Inflatable Boat (RIB) Mounted Net/Pot Hauler

NEG III can also carry out fixed fishing net surveys through the RIBs onboard hydraulic net/pot hauler. This can be used as a stand-alone survey vessel with provision for two crew; however, the deck and workspace area of NEG III is a significant advantage to practical sampling. 

Onboard Facilities

NEG III is a state of the art vessel with a view to enforcement and monitoring purposes. That said the vessels facilities are comfortable and modern. There are four twin cabins, comfortably accommodating 8 persons as well as separate heads and a shower room. There is also a well-equipped galley and mess area with an oven, microwave, fridge/freezer and other domestic appliances. The mess area also has a TV/DVD and FM radio/CD.

Contact Information

David McCandless
Chief IFC Officer
07771 936501
01482 393515

This page is available as a PDF for hard copy printing and filing purposes:

North Eastern Guardian III (pdf 4.2mb opens in a new window)

Humber Protector
Humber Protector

Humber Protector 2004 to present

In July 2004 NESFC took delivery of a 6.4 m Rigid Inflatable Boat (RIB) ‘Humber Protector’ to support its land based operational activities. The vessel was built by Humber Inflatables in Hull and carries a range of communication and electronic plotting equipment. Capable of a top speed to 26 knots it can be launched throughout the district. This vessel remains in service and was inherited from NESFC on 1 April 2011.

Bravo I 2010
Bravo I 2010

Bravo I


Bravo 1 was built by Boomeranger RIBS in Helsinki Finland in 2007 and designed to be ‘carried’, launched and recovered by NEG III on a stern ramp system. Bravo I is a 6.4m RIB powered by an inboard Penta Volvo diesel engine capable of a top speed of 30 knots. The vessel carries a range of communication and navigational equipment including a combined plotter/sounder and a pot/net hauling system. Although the vessel is routinely carried by NEG III to support the boarding and inspection of vessels at sea it can also operate in a stand alone capacity from the main vessel.