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Seaway Notices 2004


Allowable Draft - 2004 Navigation Season

In the Welland Canal, a maximum allowable draft of 80.8 dm (26'6") will be in effect from the start of the navigation season for all inland vessels and those ocean vessels equipped with bow thrusters. For all ocean vessels not equipped with bow thrusters the maximum allowable draft will be 80.0 dm (26'3"). A testing program to allow these vessels to transit at 80.8 dm (26'6") will be conducted during April and May.

Please note that, for vessels loaded to a draft greater than 80.0 dm, speeds will be monitored carefully between the upper entrance to Lock 7 and former Bridge 10 in order to attenuate the bank erosion in this area. In addition, there will be zero tolerance for vessel drafts in excess of 80.8 dm (26' 6'').

In the Montreal / Lake Ontario Section, the draft will be 79.2 dm (26'0") until the South Shore Canal is ice-free or April 15th, whichever occurs first, at which time the draft will be increased to 80 dm (26'3"). For this section, additional testing is required to confirm the change to 80.8 dm (26'6"). Subject to favorable water levels, these tests will be conducted on inland vessels and those ocean vessels equipped with bow thrusters as soon as the Montreal-Lake Ontario section is ice-free. Further information will be communicated once a decision is made in early May.

Additional testing in the Montreal-Lake Ontario Section will be conducted with other classes of ocean vessels in late May, early June.

February 27, 2004