NOAA survey vessels searching for dangers to navigation in Sandy's wake
NOAA Office of Coast Survey navigation response teams and other survey assets are in the water (or soon will be), as they begin checking for underwater debris and shoaling that may pose a risk to navigation. Tasked by the U.S. Coast Guard Captains of the Port, these vessels can use multibeam echo sounders or side scan sonar, as conditions warrant, to search for the answers that would speed resumption of shipping and other vessel movements.
As of noon today:
NOAA Ship Thomas Jefferson started out this morning for New York Harbor, where they will survey for obstructions in waterways, starting a daybreak tomorrow. Visual reconnaissance indicates debris and missing containers may pose a danger to shipping.
Navigation Response Team 5 mobilized from Connecticut and got underway in New York at first light this morning, surveying Anchorage Channel. Their next priorities are the route up to the Manhattan cruise ship terminal, Sandy Hook Channel, and then the Global Marine Terminal.
NOAA Ship Ferdinand Hassler spent yesterday and today surveying deep draft ship channels in Chesapeake Channel and Thimble Shoal Channel, as 78 large vessels, including portions of the Navy's Atlantic Fleet, waited to transit through the entrance to Chesapeake Bay.
NOAA R/V Bay Hydro II is surveying in the Hampton Roads area yesterday and today, checking channels needed by coal shipments and aircraft carriers at Norfolk.
Navigation Response Team 2 is on its way from their regularly scheduled surveying off Florida's coast, headed to help out in NY/NJ. Additionally, an operations manager is transporting mobile survey equipment to New York, as an additional survey resource on a vessel of opportunity.
NOAA R/V Potawaugh obilized this morning to Lewes, Del., to survey for shoaling that may pose a risk to safe navigation for the Cape May - Lewes Ferry and other vessels. They started surveying, using the multibeam echo sounder, at 1 pm today.
For updates on navigation response to Sandy, or to read earlier posts on the response, check the NOAA Coast Survey blog.