Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Questions (2342)

Catherine Connolly

Question:

2342. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the number of legal proceedings instituted by the Marine Survey Office against vessel owners, small passenger vessels, fishermen and-or larger commercial vessels for alleged breaches of national, EU and-or international rules and regulations in the past five years; the percentage of those which were successful; the cost to date of these legal proceedings; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31868/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Transport)

The Marine Survey Office is a Division within my Department. Prosecutions are taken by me as Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, unless the charges are on indictment (in which case it is the DPP).

The Department’s primary concern in the Maritime area is Maritime Safety, both the safety of passengers and that of seafarers, including fishers. All who use the water for work or leisure are obliged to comply with the maritime safety legal framework and compliance is enforced by the MSO and its surveyors using the suite of compliance tools available to them. These include surveys and inspections of vessels as well as prosecutions.

I have indicated the number of instances which have resulted in convictions in the table below. However it is important to note that the outcome of court cases is a matter for the Courts which may issue convictions and fines but also invoke the Probation Act. It is also important to note that a single incident may result in more than one charge against more than one person or company.

I do not have information in relation to the cost to the CSSO or DPP in bringing cases to court however in general costs are borne by the accused in cases where convictions or fines are imposed. I have indicated an approximate figure which would cover items such as witness expenses.

Our records show:

Cases instigated since 10/7/2014

16

Cost to DTTaS

€1000 approx

Convictions and/or Fines imposed

11

Dismissals

1

Proceedings Ongoing

4