Boluda Towage Europe and Multraship Towage & Salvage are helping North Sea Port, in the Netherlands and Belgium, to expand operations and plan to include the complete nautical chain within ports
North Sea Port is working with national and local authorities to manage harbour operations better to reduce delays and peaks in traffic. It has set up an online platform to manage operations, marine services and resources.
Up to Q2 2020, this involved managing traffic in the Ghent-Terneuzen Canal that crosses between Belgium and the Netherlands but this will now be expanded in geography and scope thanks to Boluda and Multraship.
The management area will be extended to cover Braakmanhaven, near Terneuzen, and the Sloe area. Its scope will be expanded to cover planning ship escorts, towage and berthing to reduce inefficiencies and improve resource management.
Port operations planning will streamline shipping traffic calls in a safe and timely manner, depending on information from vessel owners on a ship’s intended arrival and departure times for its quayside destination.
The port authorities and nautical service providers need to accommodate these requirements, including when there are peaks in shipping traffic.
A consortium known as Joint Nautical Authority (GNA) is planning port operations to accommodate evolving shipping traffic requirements. It includes Netherlands’ Directorate-General for Public Works and Water Management (Rijkswaterstaat), the Flemish Agency for maritime and coastal services, North Sea Port and local nautical service providers and community authorities.
Under the strategic planning phase, the partners’ will co-ordinate their long-term capacity planning to respond more effectively to expected peak situations, poor weather conditions and congestion and delays.
They will use a realistic scenario for planning resources taking into account all known and relevant factors such as vessel characteristics, restrictions in terms of infrastructure, nautical preconditions, the traffic situation and weather conditions. Each party involved will be provided with the necessary information via a joint online platform.
Additionally, GNA could adapt and optimise work agreements (between service providers and North Sea Ports) in consultation with the partners to improve planning and resources.
A next step involves translating these work agreements into concrete guidelines in the procedural manual. GNA expects this to create clarity for the different workforces and serve as input during the required system adaptations. Final objectives of this initiative are to improve transparency of port operations and optimise shipping activities.
These work agreements are possible in part thanks to the support of North Sea Port, Boluda Towage Europe, Multraship Towage & Salvage, Montis Mooring and joint authorities.
North Sea Port covers 60 km of coastal area that stretches from Vlissingen in the Netherlands, south to Ghent in Belgium.
There is a growing trend in maritime for sharing information between ships and port operators and authorities to optimise harbour operations.
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