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Last Updated: Wednesday, 10 September, 2003, 13:56 GMT 14:56 UK
'Floating bulldozer' cleans Clyde
Water witch
The boat can lift 1000kg in its scoops
A 200,000 boat has become Glasgow City Council's latest weapon in its fight to clean up debris from the River Clyde.

Known as the "Water Witch", the vessel and its large scoop can remove floating debris from the water.

A total of 14 life belts costing about 30 each have already been removed from the Clyde to be returned to emergency posts during a training day for staff.

The Water Witch has been purchased along with a skipper barge that can remove pollution from below the water and hold up to 16 tonnes of rubbish at a time.

Council leader Charlie Gordon said the vessels would help make a difference in the Clyde's clean-up operation.

He said: "This is another step along the way to make the River Clyde a better place to live beside and work on.

"Floating debris is not just unsightly, it's dangerous to the craft we are encouraging to use the river.

"The Water Witch has been successfully tried and well tested around the world."

Water witch
Large scoops lift debris from the water
The craft and barge were built by the Liverpool Water Witch Marine & Engineering Co Ltd - world leaders in marine pollution control.

Operating from George V docks, two new staff members have been employed and trained to operate the special attachments - mesh scoop, cradle and small dredge, picking up rubbish and depositing it into two skips stored on the Skipper Barge.

The Water Witch can push the barge across the water to its operating site, fill it and then return to the docks for its skips to be removed and replaced with empty ones.

The Scottish Executive's 'Quality of Life' budget supplied the funding for the craft

The boats are already used in Hong Kong harbour, Malawi, Kuwait, South Africa and the USA.


SEE ALSO:
Steamer returns to the Clyde
14 Jun 03  |  Scotland
Clyde flooding under spotlight
13 Dec 02  |  Scotland
Liddell hails Clyde's future
22 Jun 02  |  Scotland
New era for River Clyde
14 Jul 01  |  Scotland


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