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Object washed up on Achill beach returned to US Embassy


HAND OVER The strange object which washed up on Keel beach on Achill Island was handed over to US Embassy staff.

Anton McNulty

A TORPEDO shaped object which washed up on an Achill beach last week was returned to the US Embassy in Dublin after it went missing in the Atlantic.
The yellow cylinder shaped object measuring approximately two metres in length was found by a member of the public washed ashore on Keel beach on Wednesday, January 22. The object was handed over to the Achill Coast Guard unit who in turn handed it over to An Garda Síochána who made enquiries as to what it was and who it belonged to.
The manufacturer Teledyne Marine were contacted and the gardaí discovered that the object was a Slocum G3 Glider which is used for ‘remote water column observation for academic, military, and commercial applications’.
The glider was stored over the weekend in Westport Garda Station who were contacted by personnel in the US Embassy in Dublin who arranged to collect it yesterday (Monday) afternoon. It is understood that the glider was being used by the US Navy in the North Atlantic when it went missing in storms before ending up on Keel beach. It is not known how long the glider was missing.
It is understood that the glider is used to provide ‘high quality oceanographic data’ and is believed to cost in the region of €150,000. According to the manufacturer’s website, once deployed it can be easily controlled from anywhere in the world through the use of web based piloting tools.
“Slocum gliders enable high resolution sampling over transects that can be revisited during single deployment. This enables resolution of sampled features over time and space at a substantially lower cost than with traditional methods,” the Teledyne Marine website read.
The website also stated that it can also operate in ‘the roughest seas’ and ‘no matter the sea state, gliders are capable of continuous sampling without risking personnel or costly assets’.