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Web Alert: Panama Canal draft restrictions

30 March 2016

Further to the club’s last update on possible draft restrictions in the Panama Canal, the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) has issued Advisory to Shipping No. A-12-2016, informing that with effect from 18 April 2016, the maximum authorised transit draft will be set at 11.89m (39.0 feet) in tropical fresh water (TFW).
 
The maximum transit draft for the Panama Canal on and before 21 March 2016 was 12.04 meters (39.5 feet) in tropical fresh water (TFW) which will be allowed until 21 March 2016.
 
Vessels loaded after 21 March 2016 must comply with the new draft limitation; otherwise they may have to trim or off-load cargo depending on the level in Gatun Lake at the time of transit. These draft restrictions are expected to be eliminated as soon as the Gatun Lake levels return to normal.
 
Members are recommended to ensure that their vessels due for Panama Canal transit observe the new draft limitations until further announcements from the Panama Canal Authority (ACP).
 
The inauguration of the new expanded locks is expected to be held on 26 June 2016. The summary of the New Panama Canal constraints is as follows:

 

 
Length
Beam
Draft
Air Draft
New Panama Canal
366.00 m
(1200.48 feet)
49.00 m
(160.72 feet)
15.20 m
(49.87 feet)
57.91 m
(190 feet)