Boating people, locals and frequent visitors alike will have noticed a change in the outline of the Iluka/Yamba Marine Rescue Base at Iluka when looking across the river from Whiting Beach at Yamba.
The long standing ‘A’ frame communications mast has been replaced by a single stainless steel pole and modern dipole base station antennas.
The old mast was corroded to the stage where it was becoming unsafe and it had to be completely refurbished and modified or replaced and, as its footings were badly rusted –it was decided to replace the mast.
The design for the new mast was thrashed out over several months with a Yamba based design engineering company. The contract for its fabrication, installation and the removal of the old mast was awarded to Yamba’s Andrew Harris Engineering.
The new mast is freestanding and pivots like a boom gate, thus enabling maintenance to be carried out without the OHS problem of having to climb a tower.
Fabrication was completed and Andrew Harris’s team carried out the installation at the end of November.
Grafton’s Northern Rivers Communications then carried out the installation of the antennas and the wiring, with the mast in the lowered position.
It is hoped that the new mast will be maintenance free for the foreseeable future. We have tried as much as possible to use local firms to carry out the update as the funds for it were raised from donations from the local community. Frank Bond