The surveys were conducted on behalf of the United Kingdom and Cayman Islands governments after the project was awarded through a competitive bid contract, issued and overseen by the United Kingdom Hydrographic Office (UKHO). Fugro mobilised two survey launches equipped with modern, multibeam sonar suites to capture seabed bathymetry data and as part of the survey, tidal observations and tidal stream measurements were also collected. The surveys were conducted to International Hydrographic Organisation standards as specified by the UKHO; delivery of the final survey products and project completion is set for March 2018.
Updating the nautical charts will support safe navigation in the region, improving access for trade and tourism related industries and enabling a wider range of ships to call safely at the islands. The information can also assist in infrastructure planning and development, improving resilience against forces of nature and helping the Cayman Islands meet its international maritime obligations.
Fugro’s Don Ventura, Hydrographic Business Development Manager, explained, “High quality, data-rich hydrographic surveys are fundamental to safe and accurate maritime navigation. Under this contract we've drawn on the services of our Hydrography Center of Excellence to help improve access to this British Overseas Territory.”
Funding for the project was provided under the UK Government’s Overseas Territories Seabed Mapping Programme.