RockFLEET approved as only Iridium solution for Queensland VMS

RockFleet approved for Queensland VMS Compact, lightweight tracking system receives green light for Queensland VMS. Image: RockFLEET

The proven RockFLEET global tracking and messaging system, manufactured by UK-based Iridium satcom specialist Rock Seven, has been selected as one of four approved devices in a mandated scheme to install a Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) to all Queensland commercial fishing vessels.

Under the terms of the scheme, all commercial fishing and charter boats will require a vessel tracking device to be fitted and operational by 2020. Net, crab and line boats, meanwhile, will need to have a VMS in place from 1st January 2019. Rock Seven’s trusted partner Option Audio will be managing the installation and ongoing management of the units.

Three other systems using alternative satellite networks have also been approved, making RockFLEET the only Iridium-based solution available for Queensland’s fishing vessels. Its proven reliability ensures skippers can always meet reporting requirements under the scheme, with low initial outlay and airtime costs, while the compact, lightweight design makes it easy to install.

“The decision to implement RockFLEET as an approved device for this scheme is a measure of the unit’s proven success in communicating detailed and highly reliable vessel position data,” said Rock Seven director Nick Farrell.

“We’re proud to have been selected as it’s a testament to Rock Seven’s increasing prominence in commercial VMS applications.”

The commercial fishing industry is of crucial importance to the economic wellbeing of Australia’s coastal communities. Queensland’s fishing fleet of several thousand licensed commercial fishing vessels accounts for 10% of Australia’s seafood production in both quantity and value.

“Vessel tracking is a key element of the Queensland Sustainable Fisheries Strategy 2017-2027, paving the way for a world-class fisheries management system,” said Mark Furner, Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries.

He added that Queensland’s commercial trawl fisheries have deployed vessel tracking for 15 years.

This has helped them to demonstrate the sustainability of their fishery, particularly operating in a World Heritage Area.”

The new mandated tracker scheme for commercial fishing boats will enable Fisheries Queensland to monitor fishing quotas and compliance with area/seasonal closures, while also validating logbook data in terms of the time and location of fishing excursions. The collated data will also provide invaluable information and insights with regard to fish biomass.

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