The China MSA has published a Safety Notification to All Vessels Sailing in Zhejiang Coast.Zhejiang coast, which is located in the central part of the mainland China, has concentrated a large amounts of vessels (including merchant vessels, fishing boats, military ships etc.) sailing in this area.
There are various islands and/or reefs，and strong tide and current are frequently encountered. Poor weather condition (fog, typhoons, monsoon wind etc.) is also a threat to safe navigation. Many navigational traffic accidents occurred in this area throughout the year.
In view of the above, safety navigational recommendations are kindly advised as follows:
1. Zhoushan fishing ground is one of the world-famous fishing area, there are hundreds of thousands fishing boats engaged in fishing in this area. Due to communication barrier and other reasons, collision accidents between merchant vessels and fishing boats are frequently occurred, especially in fog season. All ships sailing in this area are advised to keep clear of concentrated fishing boats area, and navigate with extremely caution.
In case of collision accident occurred, vessel involved should take immediate search and rescue operation, meanwhile, report to local maritime safety administration instantly.
2. Seafarers should maintain all nautical publications and charts up-to-date, choose recommended route, and frequently check positions and the depth of the water en-route to ensure the safety of navigation.
3. Considering that there are numerous shipping/fishing ports along Zhejiang coast, plenty of vessels sailing inbound/outbound, cross head situation frequently occurring, vessels sailing in this area should keep sharp lookout, all actions to avoid collision shall be positive, made in ample time and with due regard to the observance of good seamanship.
4. Cross-island bridges (both constructed and under-construction), overhead power lines, underwater pipelines can be found here and there. Seafarers should calculate carefully and ensure enough clearance before passing overhead bridges/power lines, and keep safe distance from pipelines when dropping anchor.
5. Passenger vessels and ferries are also important factors to be considered for safe navigation. There are many passenger vessels and ferries sailing cross islands throughout Zhejiang coast. All ships sailing in this area should keep highly alert and take extremely caution.
6. Strong tide current is often encountered in some natural narrow channels, with maximum current speed up to over 6 knots. All ships, especially small sized and heavy loaded ones, navigating in these channels are advised to pass by in slack water to minimize the effect of strong current and swirl.
7. Bad weather is another threat to safe navigation of vessels. Dense fog in spring, typhoon in summer, cold winds in winter is the typical weather characteristics in Zhejiang coast. Seafarers should pay special attention to weather information, check navigational warning or safety information timely and take properly preventive action.
Source: China MSA