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Tidal Thames - prosecutions

Tidal Thames - prosecutions

The masters of two high-speed ribs that operate tours on the tidal Thames have been fined for dangerous navigation.

Westminster Magistrates’ Court heard how Sam Isaacs and Gerard Foley broke safety rules set out in the Port of London Act and River Byelaws.

Isaacs, from Rochester, Kent, had tourists aboard his rib Thames Explorer when he committed the offence on 3 May last year. Prosecutor Tim Williamson told the court that the London Rib Tours - owned boat was spotted navigating on the wrong side of the river near Canary Wharf and caused another vessel to take avoiding action.

Gerard Foley of Thames Ditton, Surrey, also had passengers aboard when his vessel Blue Thunder, owned by City Cruises PLC, came round a bend near North Greenwich Pier and collided with a cabin cruiser which had two people on board. No one was hurt in either incident.

Isaacs admitted dangerous navigation (contrary to section 108 of the Port of London Act) as well as navigating against the international collision regulations. He was fined £1,000 and ordered to pay £1620 costs.

Foley admitted dangerous navigation and was fined £3,000 with £1,620 costs.

After the hearing, PLA Harbour Master Mark Towens said: “It's in all our interests to keep the Thames safe for everyone to enjoy.

"Navigation rules are there for a reason – to keep river users safe. Hopefully, these prosecutions will serve as a lesson to all river users to stay within the rules at all times.”