The Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority (SFPA) are to provide training to owners & skippers of a number of vessels that are required to adopt the use of the Electronic Recording & Reporting System (ERS). The ERS is a system for recording, reporting, processing, storing, and transmitting fisheries data (catch, landing, sales and transhipment) according to the EU rules. The key element of the ERS is the electronic logbook. The electronic logbook is used to record and transmit in a secure way details of fishing operations. The information is managed by the master of the fishing vessel and is transmitted to the Member States authorities where the authentic fishing operation details are kept in a secure database.
All vessels 12m or greater are required to use Electronic Recording & Reporting System (ERS) since January 2012. To date, an exemption has been in place for some vessels that fall into the 12-15m category on the basis of either: the vessel is at sea less than 24 hours per trip, or the vessel is fishing within the 12 nautical mile limit. This exemption is now being removed for the 12-15m category – which consists of approximately 48 registered vessels - ahead of pending regulations that will require 10m-12m vessels to also have ERS on board.
Registered owners of these exempt 12-15m vessels were contacted by letter by the SFPA during the week commencing the 27th February 2023 to advise of this removal of the exemption. Included in this correspondence, the SFPA have advised of training for the owners and skippers of these vessels on certain dates from 30th March to 25th April 2023 in Castletownbere, Greencastle, Dingle, Dublin, Wexford, and Westport to facilitate ease of access for all parties concerned.
The one-day training will cover how to use the ERS application. Upon completion of the training, a laptop provided by the SFPA will be allocated to each vessel for commencement of use of ERS immediately. The SFPA will provide support for the users and the ERS application after training.
Commenting on the programme, the SFPA said:
“An important element of our remit is the promotion of compliance with the EU Common Fisheries Policy, sea-fisheries law and seafood safety legislation, to ensure the long-term sustainability of this valuable social and economic resource. The SFPA engages positively with fishers on a continuous basis, providing the most up-to-date information and training on how best to comply with the rules of the Common Fisheries Policy.”
Schedule of ERS training events:
Thursday 30th March – Castletownbere 09:00 – 17:00
Tuesday 4th April - Greencastle 09:00 – 17:00
Thursday 13th April - Dingle 09:00 – 17:00
Tuesday 18th April - Dublin 09:00 – 17:00
Thursday 19th April - Wexford 09:00 – 17:00
Tuesday 25th April - Westport 09:00 – 17:00