The West Gulf Maritime Association Maritime Affairs team participated on the call and has the following report:
USCG Waterways Management has downsized the safety zone to about a nautical mile around the salvage area, affectively freeing up most of the lower bay and Clear Creek area to recreational boating. This restriction may be lifted later today.
Vessel Traffic Service (VTS) advised:
• The damaged barges are both being moved independently from each other, from the incident site up to the San Jacinto River.
• There is no meeting or overtaking restriction around each of the barges.
• At the time of the PCT call, the barges are both north of the Bayport Flare already.
• Once the damaged barges have been moved into their planned destination, the Houston Ship Channel will be reopened to all traffic.
Multiple channel users have provided their priority vessel lists to VTS and the Houston Pilots. No urgent or emergent situations were advised during the conference call.
Houston Pilots advised yesterday they handled 22 arrivals and 15 sailings. Today they have 41 arrivals and 14 sailings. The current plan is to start outbound traffic from Bayport about 1130 hours and continue working up the channel as the damaged barges move. Normal two-way traffic is expected to resume later this afternoon.
Please contact the local Inchcape office for more information regarding movements and closures.
Phone: +1 281 860 1500