As the spring 2019 date to rollout Inshore Vessel Monitoring Systems (IVMS) across all British fishing vessels draws near, Succorfish has announced one of the most significant updates yet to its ground breaking Fisherman’s app.  The upgrades have been specifically designed to support smaller vessels required to operate IVMS but without access to an onboard power source.

The consultation by the Department for Environment and Rural Affairs outlines that every registered British fishing vessel under 12m is expected to have an IVMS fitted by June 2021.  The consultation documents can be found here for vessel owners seeking a better understanding of how the new legislation will affect their fishing operation.

As one of the three firms eligible to offer the fully-funded IVMS technology to English Fishing vessels with our SC2 IVMS device, we have received enquiries from all corners of the country requesting information on how the introduction of IVMS technology will affect individual boats of varying size and capability.

The feedback received from the fishermen has driven us to develop a fit for purpose solution for unpowered vessels supported by a simple App to give Fishermen the details they need to monitor the status of the iVMS device at any given time.

Over the past 18 months, it has become apparent that IVMS technology doesn’t necessarily offer a one-size-fits-all approach for smaller vessels, and we have certainly had our eyes opened to the number and variety of such vessels spread around the country.  Through consultation with fishermen, we identified a number of areas for further research and development to help improve our technology for this very important sector of the fishing industry.

The major challenge we faced is how to provide a simple solution that will work for small scale vessels. Smaller vessels have limited space for onboard power as is the space to actually site an iVMS system. Assuming that a system can be supplied, how does the fisherman know that its working when they are ready to sail at 4am?  Responding to this challenge drove new innovation for the Succorfish Fisherman’s App. Currently, the Fisherman’s App allows fishermen to check if their SC2 iVMS device is reporting and at what time and location its last report was received.  The location is then presented on a clear map via the app.

For those systems operating on an autonomous battery, it is critical that they know what the status of the battery is.  To keep fishing, they need to know if they have enough power to complete their trip or if their iVMS device will need charging before the trip is completed. The newest version of the Fisherman’s app not only identifies when the device is active and reporting, but also how much power is available and details of when it was last charged.  This allows vessel owners to manage the equipment as you would any onboard device to ensure there is enough power to support the length of the fishing trip required and schedule a recharge when necessary.

In effect, the Fisherman’s App now supports our devices with clear and transparent notifications ensuring that the fishermen are always one step ahead. During the install of our hardware our engineers will also install the Fisherman’s App and provide useful training on how to use it and explain the relevant terminology. They will also demonstrate the help section and ensure that all our customers know where to turn if they need any assistance.

The new upgrades to the Fisherman’s app reflect our commitment to creating technology that works for all  boats.  We are in a position to support vessels of varying shapes and sizes with appropriate IVMS technology that is flexible to the onboard power sources available.  By futureproofing SC2, we are ready to deliver for the next generation looking to install the Succorfish SC2 IVMS onboard their vessels.

If you have any questions on the Succorfish I-VMS device you can contact Tom Rossiter, fisheries manager at Succorfish on 0191 447 6883 or