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Approaching winter storm

  • calendar

    7 March 2018

  • location

    Northern New England, United States

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We are tracking another significant coastal storm that is set to impact Northern New England Wednesday afternoon through Thursday evening. The most recent National Weather Service predictions indicate that sustained wind could reach 45 knots offshore in the Gulf of Maine with seas up to 23 feet, and 30 knots along the coast, with 12-21 foot seas. The storm is expected to bring heavy snow and near blizzard conditions, significantly reducing visibility.

Given the damage from the storm earlier this week, flooding and beach erosion is still possible despite lower astronomical tides and storms urge.

The ports in the Northern New England Captain of the Port Zone remain open to all traffic. However, we strongly recommend the following precautions in advance of the storm:

  1. Pleasure craft and fishing vessels are advised to seek safe refuge.
  2. Ferry operators should evaluate their ability to operate in the pending conditions and take all necessary actions to ensure the safety of passengers and crew.
  3. Anticipate that drawbridge operations may be restricted due to high winds and safety concerns.
  4. All self-propelled oceangoing vessels over 500 gross tons and all barges and their supporting tugs should consider the requirements include in the Remaining in Port checklist. While this checklist is primarily used for an approaching hurricane, it can prove useful for any heavy weather event.
  5. Facility managers should review communications procedures, operations manuals and/or heavy weather plans, and consider lowering the height of container stacks.
  6. Adjust transfer operations as necessary based on the environmental conditions.

All vessel, facilities and maritime stakeholders should continue to monitor the weather forecasts for changing conditions. Coast Guard personnel may be reaching out directly to facility and vessel representatives to determine the intent of vessel movements and cargo operations over the next 24-48 hours. Following the passage of the storm, vessels and facilities should conduct damage assessments and report any damage to the COTP. IN the event of significant damage, vessels and facilities may be prevented from receiving cargo or passengers until approved by the COTP…

…any vessel casualties, pollution, or any incidents that may affect the navigable waterways of Maine and New Hampshire should be reported to the Coast Guard Sector Northern New England Command Center via VHF channels 16 or 22, or via phone at (207) 767-03030.

(For information about operations in the United States contact GAC North America at usa@gac.com)

Source: U.S. Coast Guard Sector Northern New England, Marine Safety Information Bulletin 05-18 dated 6 March 2018  

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