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20th August 2017 | Today's High Tide | 12:06 - 4.89m | Full Tide Tables

Harbour Directions

The Crouch Harbour Authority has been designated with powers to issue Harbour Directions. Any Harbour Authority that intends to utilise powers under the Act is required to set up a PUG (Port Users Group) The PUG have the opportunity to consider proposed Harbour Directions at least 14 days before the formal consultation period.

PUG will further play a particularly important role in the event of unresolved objections; they will have a responsibility to seek to achieve resolution at a local level whenever possible.

The contravention of a Harbour Direction constitutes a criminal offence with all the implications which that entails. These include, for the Harbour Authority, the formal process of cautioning, preparation of case and prosecution where the direction needs to be enforced through the courts and for the master of the ship, potential criminal liability and the fine and consequential reputational loss which will follow if convicted.

It should be noted that Harbour Directions are given by the Harbour Authority rather than its officers.

Over the past few months there have been numerous and frequent complaints in regard to the wash/wake created by some ships (see definition of a ship below) whilst navigating within the 8 knot speed limit areas (as set out in Crouch Harbour 1978 Byelaws) despite the attempts by the CHA to curtail the problem by issuing guidance and the deployment of new signage.

Complying with maximum permitted speed limits does not exonerate the Master of any Ship from their responsibility to reduce speed as necessary in observance of normal practice of good seamanship.

It is not just speed that is dangerous, excess wash can also be a significant hazard.

In response to this matter of nuisance wash/wake the attached Harbour Direction Proposal is deemed necessary and has been through the initial consultation with the CHA Port Users Group.

We ask all river users to consider the attached proposal and respond accordingly.