Comhairle nan Eilean Siar (CnES) is the Statutory Harbour Authority for 32 harbours in the Western Isles, and the owner and operator for 51 pier, jetty and slipway facilities. Their port and harbour facilities are spread throughout the Outer Hebrides, many located in areas of sparse population, meaning low numbers of harbour users.
These ports and harbours are typically unmanned during normal operations, attended by CnES marine staff on a scheduled basis in response to harbour user information and requests.
Recognising it is good practice to regularly review operations, CnES commissioned ABPmer to appraise its current arrangements for discharging its duties as a Statutory Harbour Authority.
Our maritime specialists conducted a governance review and marine services evaluation with members of the Comhairle’s marine team, port management and elected Council Members.
A Marine Safety Management System (MSMS) was created as a requirement of the Port Marine Safety Code, following a review of the Council’s marine operations. This document and its supporting Standard Operating Procedures were provided to the Harbour Authority as an output from the technical work.
The review concluded 28 recommendations concerning Harbour Authority governance, safety and marine service provision. ABPmer presented the findings from the review to the CnES Harbour Board at a Council meeting held in Stornoway.