Welcome to our first In the Spotlight instalment, where we find out more about what Derek O’Driscoll, our Environmental Sampler, does here at CLS.
Q. Tell us what a typical workday looks like for you?
I’m on the road and in a boat most days of the week. I typically grab a coffee, hit the road by 06:30 and drive to a location to meet the boat driver. I get the bottles labelled and organise the equipment I need for that day’s specific sampling needs, calibrate the Hydrolab DS5 (multiparameter water quality probe) and then get the boat loaded. Sampling can take between one to three hours depending on the location and weather. Once all the equipment and samples are back in the van onshore, I head back to the office in Galway.
Q. What has been your CLS highlight since joining the company?
It was in June, and I was taking water samples in Kenmare Bay and the weather was perfect – sun shone, and the sea was very calm – and for whatever reason there was a lot of wildlife in the bay that day. We saw minke whales, dolphins, puffins, gannets, and shearwaters PLUS a white-tailed sea eagle!! that flew pretty close to the boat. You don’t get that sitting in the office!
Q. Share a surprising fact about yourself?
I spent four months in Cambodia working on a seahorse conservation project as a survey diver.