Port operations in Turkey were facing disruption as a result of a massive power cut that had hit dozens of provinces across the country on Tuesday 31 March. Although the Turkish Straits and ports were not closed, husbandry operations (crew changes, spares, etc.) have been negatively affected. The cuts affected power stations and public transport, including Istanbul's tram and metro systems. A crisis centre has been set up at the energy ministry.
By early afternoon the Turkish Electricity Transmission company said only 15% of Istanbul and Ankara had power.
Turkey shuts Bosphorus Strait due to bridge construction
Turkey on Thursday, March 26 closed the Bosphorus Strait, a key shipping channel for Russian oil and other commodities, to allow for construction work on a bridge, shipping agent GAC Turkey said. The strait, which bisects Europe’s largest city Istanbul, was shut at 5 a.m. (0300 GMT) and was scheduled to re-open at 7 p.m.
The Bosphorus will be closed to all transit traffic in both directions from 05:00 to 16:00 hours local time on Friday 9 January, due to the works on 3rd Bosphorus Bridge.
Masters of vessels trading should act in accordance with VTS instructions and take all related precautions.
Bad weather is expected in the Turkish Straits and ports in the coming four days. All vessels trading in the area are urged to exercise caution and comply with the instructions of the authorities. Although efforts will be made to continue operations, expecially in the Turkish Straits, this will be subject to weather pemritting.
Storm forces Turkey to shut Dardanelles to tankers
Turkey shut its Dardanelles Strait on Dec. 30 to tankers and its flag carrier cancelled some domestic and international flights in and out of Istanbul due to a storm.
The Dardanelles waterway is frequently forced to shut during the winter due to rough weather, usually at least two or three times a month.
Five northbound and three southbound tankers waiting to pass through the Dardanelles were expected to be scheduled to do so on Tuesday, shipping agency GAC said.
The Bosphorus Strait remained open.
Connecting the Black Sea to the Mediterranean, the Dardanelles and Bosphorus straits form one of the world’s major energy shipping routes, with about 10,000 vessels carrying 150 million tonnes of oil and petroleum products on the waterways every year.
Turkish Airlines cancelled 10 flights to and from Istanbul, while local ferries across the Bosphorus were also cancelled.