7.2m versatile diveboat for Cheshire Police Department

Press Release provided by Cheshire Police

The North West Underwater Search and Marine Unit provides specialist policing services fromthe Scottish border down to Barmouth in mid-Wales. The Unit is acollaboration of six Police Forces that includes, Cumbria,Lancashire, Merseyside, Greater Manchester, Cheshire and North Wales.

The tasks that the Officers undertake are wide and varied, and range from maritime security operations, evidential and missing persons searches that include the searchingof ponds, weirs, reservoirs, rivers, streams, canals, docks, lakes, quarries(some of these at altitude), and security patrols inshore, and offshore up to12 nautical miles out into the Irish Sea. The Unit is also tasked with the recovery of bodies from the water. In addition, the Officers are all confined spacetrained and will undertake a number of tasks not traditionally associated withpolice diving.

Although all the Police Officers on the Unit are commercial divers, they utilise a variety of different search techniques, methods and specialist equipment suchas side scan sonar, scanning sonar, remotely operated vehicle, and acoustic tracking, as well as the more familiar ‘police diver in the water’.

This combination of established practice and new technologies has provided for greater efficiency and capability.

In addition to their 42 foot Police Launch, and several rigid inflatable boats,the Unit is about to take possession of a newly commissioned Cheetah Marine coded police boat. This vessel met the demanding requirements of the Unit in that they needed a boat that was:

  • A stable all weather platform with a spacious cabin and working area
  • Towable on road
  • Be capable of duty both inland and offshore
  • Manoeuvrable and with excellent sea keeping qualities
  • A good balance of performance and economy
  • Able to provide a highly visible police presence

TheCheetah will be equipped with Simrad instrumentation, navigation and Simradstructure scan sonar.

Inspector Dave Corcoran, who leads the Unit said “without doubt, this vessel will provide us with an even greater capability and capacity for our work, and the Cheetah will be proving it’s worth whilst in service when deployed for the duration of the Olympics in Dorset.”

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