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Panama Canal postpones new draft limits due to rainfall
With plenty of rain finally falling over the past week in Panama, the authorities have postponed a sixth draft restriction of 2019. The maximum authorised draft of 13.11 m for vessels transiting the new neopanamax locks and 11.73 m for vessels transiting the old panamax locks will become effective June 12 instead of May 28. The current maximum authorised draft stands at 13.41 m. “We will continue to monitor the level of Gatun Lake and announce future draft adjustments in a timely manner,” the Panama Canal Authority stated in a note to shipping lines.
Maximum authorized draft for Neopanamax locks
Based on the present and projected level of Gatun Lake for the following weeks, effective February 27, 2019, the maximum authorized draft for vessels transiting the Neopanamax Locks will be 14.63m (48.0 feet) Tropical Fresh Water (TFW). Vessels arriving with drafts over 14.63 m (48.0 feet) TFW may be allowed to transit past February 27, 2019, depending on the actual level of Gatun Lake at the time of transit. Otherwise, they will be required to trim or off-load cargo in order to be allowed to transit. Draft adjustments will be announced in 12 inch (30.5 cm) decrements, generally with at least four weeks advance notice.
Panama Canal to Implement Modifications to Transit Reservation System
As part of its commitment to maximizing the efficiency, flexibility and reliability of its service to all customers, the Panama Canal announced changes to the Transit Reservation (booking) System for Neopanamax vessels, effective October 1, 2018. The modifications are a step in a positive direction for the Neopanamax Locks and take into consideration the lifting of certain navigation rules for liquefied natural gas (LNG) vessels and ongoing customer feedback, as well as routine analysis of the utilization and fair market value of the Expanded Canal. “We are fully committed to understanding and meeting the ever-changing needs of the global shipping community,” said Panama Canal Administrator Jorge L. Quijano. “These changes, guided by input from our customers, strategic planning and years of experience, are an essential next step in ensuring the continued availability of the Expanded Canal for all.”News schreiben