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    Sound Off, 11-1-11

    January 11, 2011

    The Commissioners of Irish Lights have chosen this auspicious day to formally shut down the last fog signals around our coastline.

    The last lighthouses to lose their horn are:

    Fastnet

    Roche’s Point

    Old Head of Kinsale

    Ballycotton

    Hook Head

    Tuskar Rock

    Kish

    Dundalk

    St. John’s Point

    East Pier, Dun Laoghaire

    CIL says the decision to turn off the fog horns was because of “rapid advances in marine navigation technology” and the fact fog horns are “not an aid to navigation”.  In other words, every mariner needs to have a working GPS receiver and a chartplotter.

    I beg to differ.  Over the years, sailing small boats (too small to have GPS) in Dublin Bay, the East Pier fog horn has been the only way to find home when fog rolls in over the bay.

    And, when it’s snowing, we could hear the East Pier fog horn all the way to Terenure.

    Notice to Mariners from CIL, 10 September 2010.

    Factoid of the day:  11111 in binary = 31 in decimal

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