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20th October 2014 | Today's High Tides | 10:57 - 4.27m | 23:24 - 4.45m | Full Tide Tables

Vessel Movements and Manoeuvring

All vessel manoeuvres in the river will be under control of Crouch Pilots until the vessels’ masters have obtained Pilotage Exemption Certificates (8 Trips supervised by pilots and a test of Local Knowledge). Crossrail have agreed to fund a major improvement to Buoyage in the river and approaches (progress with the overhaul of buoyage will be notified on this site).

Immediately on arrival or on departure vessels will have to swing (turn round) in the river in the area between the Horse Shoal and the downriver end of the Burnham moorings. It is essential that commercial vessels are not hampered or obstructed while swinging because, especially when the flood tide is running, delay in completing the swing might result in the ship being set by the tide into the moorings – the consequence of which could be very serious.

The contractors will be required to provide a tug on immediate standby to assist ships to swing in the swinging area and berth at the unloading pontoon. If due to prevailing conditions or circumstances there is any doubt about swinging in this location the fall-back position will be for the vessel to proceed past Burnham and swing opposite Creeksea, as do ships going to Baltic Wharf.

Anchoring/mooring in the swinging area will be prohibited.

Commercial vessels and certain larger vessels/tugs and tows will be under direction of a Vessel Traffic  Service (VTS) operated from the Unloading Pontoon on behalf of Crouch Harbour Authority. This service will only operate when movements of such vessels are anticipated. The principal object of the VTMS service will be to ensure safety of vessel movements by avoiding conflicts between commercial ship movements and recreational activity/events and to prevent commercial ships coming into conflict or close quarters in the vicinity of the Unloading facility, Swinging Area or Fairway past Burnham. Recreational craft will not be required to report to the VTS, but will be required to comply with its directions, as communicated principally by the Harbour Launch (or by VHF if available).