Offshore Re-Supply Charter – Bureau of Meteorology

As a supplier to the Queensland government, North Marine is contracted to perform the offshore supply voyage for the remote weather station at Willis Island since 2014.

Client: Bureau of Meteorology (BOM)

Scope of Work

The 6-monthly resupply voyage includes a complete changeover of BOM staff, transport of tradespeople, freight, food, equipment and fuel to the Bureau’s offshore facility located at Willis Island, 450km east of Cairns, in the Coral Sea.

North Marine has completed the contract every six months since 2014, ongoing, with additional ’emergency mobilisation’ voyages provided when required.

The logistically complex voyages include extensive planning with BOM and customs, performance reporting, biosecurity, and compliance with quarantine requirements.

The resupply voyage takes approx nine days to complete, with additional ample time for consultation and planning before departure for each trip.

The voyage necessitates North Marine’s charter vessels – the Gulf Explorer, an accompanying passenger vessel and multiple tender boats.


Among the many complexities of the offshore supply voyage are:

  • Weather and tidal considerations: Tidal limitations make access to the island restricted to a certain time of the month. This is compounded by the large variations in Queensland weather, which further constrict voyage dates.
  • The geology of the island: Aside from the logistics of transporting large amounts of cargo and fuel to a remote location – the island itself is logistically challenging, with steep slopes of sand to transfer goods across.
  • Transfer of tradespeople and bureau staff who are not accustomed to long voyages at sea (often in non-ideal weather). Each voyage transfers approximately ten (often more) passengers to and from the island. This includes a changeover of meteorology staff who live and work on the island, and tradespeople who perform work for the duration of the trip.
  • Each voyage requires many different pieces of machinery and equipment. While many items for transport remain the same on each voyage (multiple types of fuel, weather balloons, food etc) – each voyage will have additional cargo that changes from trip to trip. For example, previous items have included bulk roofing and building materials, ride-on lawnmowers etc


Government Supplier – Local Contractor North Marine

North Marine is a prominent marine contractor company based in the Port of Cairns in Queensland, Australia. North Marine has a long history of delivering maritime support services to Government agencies and the public sector.

Most notable is this long-term supplier role with the Bureau of Meteorology and North Marine’s long-term, recurring contract to maintain public moorings throughout the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park with Queensland Parks & Wildlife Service (QPWS). Furthermore, North Marine frequently works with Maritime Safety Queensland (MSQ) and local councils on various tenders – see ‘case studies’ for additional examples.


  • Local SME marine business in Cairns, Queensland
  • Extensive track record of Government contracting
  • Adept at performing logistically complex projects
  • Local FNQ workforce
  • A fleet of suitable charter vessels to perform works
  • Established working with border force & customs
  • Hold necessary permits
  • Experienced management & capable personnel throughout the company
  • Ethically, environmentally & socially aware supplier


North Marine has successfully completed every voyage since 2014. Contracted objectives, reporting and compliance, have always been delivered in full, on time and within budget.

Download Case Study


About the Client – Bureau of Meteorology (BOM)

The Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) is an agency of the Australian Government that provides access to information about Australian weather, climate and the natural environment via forecasts, monitoring and research.


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