23 September 2013
Work to install a second automatic weather station on Jersey’s offshore reefs started at the weekend.
The mast and communications kit for the first station, on the small islet Grand Rousse on the outer reaches of the Écréhous, were put in place at the end of August. But work on Les Maisons, some six kilometres from the main island of the Minquiers, has been delayed until now.
Jersey Met wanted to make sure nesting terns were not disturbed, and to allow enough time for the young birds to fledge and leave their nests. The terns have now fledged, but the weather hasn’t been suitable up to now.
The weather stations will help Jersey’s Met Department find out more about the wind around Jersey’s territorial waters and inform future planning about potential renewable energy sources.
As well transmitting information on wind resources in Jersey waters, the data collected will help forecast the weather and improve safety at sea. It is intended information will be published online, allowing mariners to check actual wind conditions before they head out.
Principal Meteorological Officer at Jersey Met, Tony Pallot, said “The project to install two new automatic weather stations on the offshore reefs has been a real logistical challenge, but there was a weather window on Saturday and Sunday and we were able to get the kit and mast for the Minquiers station over to the islet and erected. We can now start work on setting up the transmission of this important data.”