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Important for boats arriving in Darwin from Cairns

By Sue Richards last modified Jun 22, 2009 06:12 PM

Published: 2009-06-22 18:12:05
Countries: Australia

Dear Noonsite,

Here is a very important message for yachts arriving in Darwin (or Singapore or other South East Asian countries, as we were told):

We arrived in Darwin on last Monday morning, after a lovely sail and motorsail from Port Douglas. Upon our arrival in Darwin, we learned that the Asian Greenstriped Mussel (?) has infested Cairns for years, and that all vessels that want to enter a marina (or is it the entire port? I think so) arriving from Cairns, need to have their vessel inspected by a diver and then, if any mussels are found, hull and engine properly cleaned.

As I understood it, the Darwin port authority is paying for the inspection, but the owner of each boat has to pay for the cleaning, if necessary. Nobody in Cairns told us! We might even have bypassed the place altogether had we known about this in advance.

In Darwin there are posters advising the yachting community of this, but in Cairns, nothing! No info from the marina or port authorities! If boats attract this mussels while in Cairns waters, the Cairns port authority should be the ones paying to have their hulls and piping inspected and properly cleaned!

Luckily, we didnt need an inspection, as we have just antifouled the hull (in Cairns, by the way), and had been on the hard there for two months. We only stayed a few days in the marina in Cairns before leaving for Port Douglas and Darwin. So the fisheries authorities are levelheaded and reasonable to deal with.

Other sailors should know about this, as it can be expensive and delay their entry to Darwin by up to 24 hours.

Rune Ellingsen
SV Underveis