Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Questions (248)

James Browne


248. Deputy James Browne asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport his plans to improve buildings for the Coast Guard service in County Wexford; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7601/18]

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Written answers (Question to Transport)

The Coast Guard is a Division of my Department. There are five Coast Guard Units based in Wexford, in Courtown (with a sub-station in Arklow), Curracloe, Rosslare (with a sub-station in Carnsore), Kilmore Quay and Fethard-on-Sea. The units are single purpose shoreline search units, that do not have cliff or boat functions.

The Coast Guard has undertaken a station upgrade programme over the last twenty years, upgrading or undertaking new builds on an ongoing basis. The development of Coast Guard Stations is undertaken by the Office of Public Works on behalf of my Department. Upgraded stations, as a standard, typically contain a kitchenette, toilet, showering and changing facilities as well as classroom, operations room and garage space. Selection of the sequence of upgrading depends on a number of factors including an existing station's suitability for modernisation and enlargement or the available of suitable state-owned land for a new build.

In the Wexford area this has resulted in the building of a modern purpose built stationhouse on Rosslare strand, which has been operational for several years. In recent years Curracloe has undergone remedial works, completed in early 2015.  Plans are presently being drawn up for a new Coast Guard station at Kilmore Quay and the Office of Public Works is currently in communication with Wexford County Council regarding this development. The Coast Guard is also currently investigating options for a new Coast Guard station in Courtown. A Heritage Impact Assessment has been undertaken regarding the Fethard-on–Sea station house and the Coast Guard is currently awaiting this report. A limited extension to the Fethard-on-Sea station is also currently under consideration.