Port of Baltimore opened (with draft restrictions) a Two-Day Opportunity for Commercially Essential Vessels Through the Safety Zone

Notice Number: 206447-3
Date: 04/02/2024 17:15 thru UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE

Update-03 (20 April 2024): U.S. Coast issued Marine Safety Information Bulletin (MSIB 042-24) announced that the Captain of the Port (COTP) has established the Fort Carroll Temporary Alternate Channel and has a controlling depth of 20 feet, with a 300-foot horizontal clearance and 135-foot vertical clearance and is located just southwest of the Sollers Point Temporary Alternate Channel. This temporary alternate channel will be open on Saturday, April 20th and Sunday, April 21st for commercially essential vessels. Vessel transit will only be allowed during daylight hours and is subject to approval of the COTP.

A 2,000 yard safety zone remains in effect and vessels may not enter unless authorized by the COTP or the COTP’s designated representative. To obtain permission to enter the safety zone and transit through the temporary alternate channel, you must, as early as possible but no less than 4 hours prior to getting underway, contact the Marine Transportation System Recovery Branch at (505) 203-8141. These requests must be received between the hours of 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. For movements scheduled to occur before 10 a.m., requests must be received prior to 6 p.m. the previous day. All transits are subject to response and recovery operations.

MSIB 042-24 is attached.

Background: Baltimore Harbor is closed to vessel traffic upstream of the Francis Scott Key Bridge (I-695) following the bridge's collapse after being struck by the Singapore-flagged motor vessel DALI on March 26, 2024. The bridge collapsed into the 50-foot shipping channel (Fort McHenry channel) in vicinity of 39°13’01”N 076°31’43”W.

The U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) has established a safety zone for all navigable waters of the Chesapeake Bay within a 2000-yard radius of the Francis Scott Key Bridge intended to protect personnel, vessels, and the marine environment in these navigable waters. No vessel or person will be permitted to enter the safety zone without obtaining permission from the Captain of the Port or a designated representative.

//signed//

Lindheimer, Eric M, Chief, Navigation Branch