Winch Rooms, Service Pillars, AWLS & Health and Safety Units

Winch Rooms, Service Pillars, AWLS & Health and Safety Units

Three important services that are provided to all fishermen are the provision of winch rooms services, service pillars and automated weighing scales which are scattered around the Maltese Islands. 

Winch Rooms:

Winch rooms are very useful and a utility for fisherman. These are used everyday and they are a convenient way for fishermen to be used for their boats. These rooms are placed at the top of slipways. Their purpose is to pull boats out of water. Usually these are used by small vessels. Currently there are twelve (12) winchrooms around the island. Every locality has its own winchroom attendant. These attendants are solely responsible for the hosting of vessels . 

The majority of winch rooms are located in Marsaxlokk (5) where there is the highest concentration of f​ishermen and fishing boats, but there are also winch rooms in other fishing villages like; Marsaskala, Birzebbugia, St Julian’s, St Paul’s Bay, Kalkara, Marsamxett and Zurrieq. Currently there are ongoing projects that will see more localities equipped and able to provide this service. In all three (3) winchrooms will be newly installed. ​

The Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture takes care of the maintenance of these winches and other gear, like steel eyelets, pulleys, wire ropes, hooks and other equipment and always ensures that these are maintained in a good and safe working condition. 

: Overview of winchroom Marsaxlook as seen from outside 
Overview of winchroom Marsaxlokk as seen from inside 
Overview of antoher winchroom as seen from inside 

Automated Weighing Scales:

The AWLS are precision digital scales which purpose is to weigh the fishermen’s catches. These AWLS provide a printout and a label of the respective catch and its weight according to the species, location and fishing vessel. This data can be used to establish relevant information about the fish caught around the Maltese waters. All this data is than transmitted in a central location where it is interpreted and stored. 

Service Pillars:

In order to provide better service to Fisherman, The Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture over number of years have installed service pillars around the Maltese island. These pillars supply fishermen with water and electricity for their use on their fishing vessels. Currently there are over seventy (70) pillars installed where the majority are in the fishing village of Marsaxlokk with over fifty (50) pillars. Other localities include St Paul’s Bay, Marsaskala, Birzebbugia, St Julian’s, Kalkara, Marsamxett, Zurrieq, Msida, Mellieha and Marsa. 

Presently there are current projects going on to check out that localities have more pillars and to ensure new localities are supplied with such service. In all thirteen (13) new pillars will be installed.

For whom uses these pillars, it’s a must that they will be in possession of Transponder (chip). These can be obtained either from the Hard Standing Facility, situated in Marsaxlokk or from the Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture situated at Ghammieri Farm. The transponder would be topped up via credit for the amount they require, and hence utilise the credit from these service pillars. Payments for these transponders should always be by credit/debit card or via cheque. 

In case there are problems concerning faulty pillars, one should report on this number 21650415 available for 24/7. 

Overview of service pillar at Marsaxlokk  
Health and Safety Unit:

The Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture gives a lot of importance to the health and safety of its employees, fishermen and the public that are affected by fishing and related ancillary activities. The Health and Safety section within the Department is responsible for the implementation and enforcement of the Health and Safety Policy.  Training and regular maintenance contribute to a safe and healthy environment, keeping the Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture compliant with National and European Health and Safety Laws and Regulations.