Compulsory Regulations in the seaport of Ust-Luga amended
By Order of the Ministry of Transport of the Russian Federation dated 05.19.2023 No. 176 amendments were made to the Compulsory Regulations in the seaport of Ust-Luga.
The adjustments are related to the clarification of the boundaries of the VTS operation zones in a given navigation area and their names. In particular, the name of the VTS, previously operated in the waters of the eastern part of the Gulf of Finland, has been clarified. Currently, this is the area of operation of the Saint Petersburg VTS, which extends to the waters of the eastern part of the Gulf of Finland east of the meridian 26°30,00' east longitude to the meridian 29°12,30' east longitude within the territorial sea of the Russian Federation. Vessels transit through this area when entering or leaving the seaport of Ust-Luga.
The operation area of the Ust-Luga VTS is adjacent to the operation area of the Saint Petersburg VTS and extends to the waters of the Luga and Kopor Bay of the eastern part of the Gulf of Finland. It is bounded by the meridian of 028°00.00' E from the west and by the parallel of 60°00.00' N from the north, by the meridian of 029°00.00' E from the east and by the coastal line from the south.
Changes in the boundaries of the Ust-Luga VTS operation area are aimed at increasing the safety of navigation of vessels when they cross the borders between the Ust-Luga VTS and the Saint Petersburg VTS operation areas.
Due to the increase in the intensity of ship traffic in the St. Petersburg VTS operation area and the division of the Ust-Luga VTS operation area into two sectors, an additional VHF communication channel (channel 13) has been introduced. It will improve the efficiency of communication with VTS operators.
Adjustments to Compulsory Regulations in the seaport of Ust-Luga are also concern the expansion of the list of vessels exempt from mandatory pilotage. In particular, the list includes icebreakers, vessels of the dredging fleet, sailing under the Russian flag, during their dredging operations, rescue vessels during rescue operations, and the minimum gross capacity of vessels that are subject to the requirement of mandatory pilotage has been increased from 50 to 500.
The new document contains information about the Luga Western Channel – fairway No. 20-b. This canal was built and put into operation by the FSUE “Rosmorport” North-Western Basin Branch in December 2019. The implementation of the project for the construction of the Luga Western Canal with a length of 2,570 m, a width of 160 m and a depth of 14 m, designed for the safe passage of sea vessels of the NO-50 tanker type (draft of 11 m, length of 183.4 m, width of 32.2 m) in the seaport of Ust-Luga made it possible to ensure the safe navigation of vessels along the alignment direction 307.6°-127.6° when sailing to the berths of transshipment complexes in the northern part of the Eastern district of the seaport of Ust-Luga.
Amendments to the Compulsory Regulations in the seaport of Ust-Luga also affected the rules of navigation of vessels in the seaport of Ust-Luga water area. A number of restrictions on the need to navigate with extreme caution in certain areas of the seaport's water area and restrictions on navigation on certain channels have been cancelled. It became possible due to the improved control over the movement of vessels in the relevant areas using the technical means of the Ust-Luga vessels. Also, due to the increase in the depths and dimensions of individual channels, according to the results of the simulation conducted with the participation of the pilot service of the Ust-Luga Department of the North-Western Basin Branch, restrictions on the navigation of vessels with a larger draft and dimensions that previously operated in the waters of the Ust-Luga seaport were cancelled.
Also, in the Compulsory Regulations in the seaport of Ust-Luga, the list of vessels exempt from mandatory towing support in the presence of an additional thruster during mooring operations has been expanded. In particular, there are vessels less than 185 m long equipped with a thruster, with the exception of tankers and gas carriers; tankers and gas carriers less than 150 m long equipped with a thruster; vessels less than 150 m long with two propellers.
The updated Compulsory Regulations in the Ust-Luga seaport are also supplemented with information on approaches to the Ust-Luga seaport.In accordance with the order of the Ministry of Transport of the Russian Federation, amendments to Compulsory Regulations in the seaport of Ust-Luga come into force on March 1, 2024 and are valid until March 1, 2026. At the same time, information about the new technical capabilities of the seaport of Ust-Luga in terms of receiving vessels entered into force on June 30, 2023.