Joint Nautical Authority

Flanders and the Netherlands work together to guarantee smooth and safe shipping on the river Scheldt and its approaches. The Joint Nautical Authority ensures safe and smooth shipping traffic every day.

The Joint Nautical Autority implements the rules drawn up by the Permanent Committee and is responsible for

  • Admission policy To allow ships with a deep draft to reach their destination quickly and safely, the Joint Nautical Authority calculates tidal gates. This is a tidal gate in which a sufficiently high water level is present, taking into account the draft of the ship. The Western Scheldt Planner (WESP) is used for this.
  • The general coordination, organization and follow-up of all shipping traffic in this working area.
  • Implementing port neutral traffic management.
  • Determining on the basis of the regulations the conditions under which a ship can use the waterway.
  • Operational implementation of the integrated traffic.
  • Supervision of the pilotage regime.
  • Publishing Notices to Skippers.
  • Preparing Joint Notices.
  • Taking the first remedial measures in a shipping accident, eg imposing a shipping blockage.
  • Nautical operational advice on policy preparation for measures and regulations.
  • The Joint Nautical Authority is in close contact with the traffic controllers of the Vessel Traffic Services, where they help with the implementation of the admission policy