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Hot Port News from GAC

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Tampa/St. Petersburg/Manatee, United States
Tropical Storm Nate: Port Condition Whiskey set
Thursday, October 5, 2017, Tampa/St. Petersburg/Manatee, United States
Due to the possibility of gale force winds (34-47 knots) entering the Tampa Bay within 73 hours, the Captain of the Port (COTP) is ordering Port Condition WHISKEY for the ports of Tampa, St Petersburg and Manatee. The COTP will continue to evaluate weather predictions for the region.

Prohibited Operations: None.

Authorized Operations: All.

Restrictions: One way traffic in Egmont Channel (day and night) for vessels with drafts greater than 34 feet.

Current Actions: Waterfront facilities should be removing potential flying debris, hazardous materials and oil pollution hazards from dockside areas. Container stacking plans should be implemented. Container terminal operators shall reduce general cargo container stack heights to no more than two high for containers containing hazardous materials and no more than four high got all other containers, or propose alternate securing arrangements to the COTP. All facilities shall continue to operate in accordance with their approved Facility Security Plans and comply with the requirements of MTSA. Coast Guard Port Assessment Team will be conducting port surveys. The COTP may require additional precautions to ensure the safety of the ports and waterways.

Future Actions: Affected ports in the St. Petersburg Captain of the Port Zone should be watching this storm closely. Should higher port conditions be required, the following additionally future requirements may be implemented:

  • In preparation for the approaching heavy weather, all oceangoing commercial vessels greater than 500 gross tons are required to submit a heavy weather plan to Sector St. Petersburg via email at WWMTampa@uscg.mil to request and receive permission to remain in port. Proof of facility owner/operator approval is required.
  • Vessels bound for any of these ports, which would be unable to depart if weather conditions worsen are advised to seek alternate destination as these ports may be closed to inbound traffic.

Drawbridges may be locked down as early as eight hours prior to the anticipated arrival of sustained gale force winds or when an evacuation is in progress. During lock-down, the bridge is closed, the power is turned off, traffic arms may be removed, the control house is secured and the bridge operator is sent to safety.

(For information about operations in the United States contact GAC USA at usa@gac.com)

Source: U.S. Coast Guard, Sector St. Petersburg, Port Community Information Bulletin # 17-17 dated October 5, 2017

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