By Matt Smar
Ilfracombe Harbour staff have been presented with a custom built cage, trolley and waterproof cover for ‘Sharkie’ – the aquatic drone which is designed to clear unwanted debris such as plastics and oil from the waterway.
The items have been donated by RMB Chivenor’s Commando Logistic Regiment and the North Devon branch of the Royal Marine Association.
They will be used to transport the WasteShark from its home to the new bespoke launch system at the harbour, once complete.
The new system is being set up specifically for Ilfracombe’s tidal range by harbour staff and The Shark Ambassadors – local residents who have volunteered their time to help with the operation of Sharkie.
North Devon Councils lead member for the environment, councillor Netti Pearson, added: “’Sharkie’ is a real asset to Ilfracombe and as a resident of the town I look forward to seeing it back in action. I was at the launch last year, it is a novel way to raise awareness of the amount of plastic waste that washes up in the harbour and is a useful tool for measuring and reducing other pollutants in the water.
“The new equipment will make it easier to launch ‘Sharkie’, and house it safely, so we will be able to see it in action more often.”