An organisation has made a request to operate a private seaplane within Medway Ports. The Port of Sheerness Ltd, as the Statutory Harbour Authority, is required to regulate and manage all types of operations within the Medway and Swale and therefore has produced a consultation document (or here) on this matter, which is available on the Peel Ports website for a period of one month.
Upon completion of the consultation period, the operational requirements will be issued as a Code of Practice for Seaplane Operations. If you have any comments or queries on this matter, please contact Capt Ian Clark at email@example.com
You may also wish to contact the MSBA via firstname.lastname@example.org or Reply to this article. Further views are being expressed at the YBW East Coast Forum
UPDATE: Here is a response from Capt Ian Clark of Peel Ports:
“Below is the reply that I put together for people that have made comments.
“We have had considerable feed back about this matter, and it seems that I have perhaps not laid out the situation clearly in my notice.
“We are not proposing any new operation, seaplanes have operated from the Medway almost since the invention of flight. This particular seaplane, which is a private aircraft used for leisure, is one of only 5 seaplanes registered in the whole of the UK.
“The aircraft in question has been operating on the Medway for at least the last three years without incident or indeed comment from anybody. As the port authority we are obliged to keep the port open for anybody who wants to make use of the waters, provided there are no safety or legal concerns. There is no question of us either ‘allowing’ or ‘licencing’ this operation. We only have power to regulate it.
This consultation is merely about putting a restriction on where the aircraft can operate so that water users can be aware of where there is the small possibility that they may encounter a seaplane. For your information, there is no requirement for a surface vessel to give way to a seaplane that is landing or taking off. The legal obligation is on the aircraft commander to ensure that his landing area is clear and it is safe for him to land there.
“I hope this answers your concerns.”