04-2018: Passage Planning support document

11 June 2018

Mariners are advised to give due consideration to the following information and recommendations for the passage planning process, when boarding a Haven (Harwich Haven Authority) pilot at the Sunk pilot station.

Disclaimer/ useful links

These recommendations are not intended to supersede, substitute or interfere with-

  1. Any precautions or actions which the pilot, master or bridge team may be required to take in accordance with the COLREGs (Convention on the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea, as amended), by the ordinary practice of seamen, or by the special circumstances of the case.

  2. Harwich Haven Authority’s statutory documents and publications such as Pilotage Directions, General Directions, Byelaws, etc. or the Information for Masters and PEC Holders (all of which can be accessed online at hha.co.uk in the downloads section).

  3. Required passage planning process including appraisal, planning, execution and monitoring (also referring to all appropriate publications such as Charts, ALRS, ALL, etc.).

Mariners are referred to BA 8064 (Port Approach Guide- Harwich and Felixstowe) and ALRS Vol 6 (Harwich) as may be amended. Vessels bound for berths in Felixstowe can find additional information in the Shipmasters information guide also available on the Port of Felixstowe website.


The Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) report into the grounding of an Ultra Large Container Ship (ULCS) in August 2016 contains a recommendation to “consider providing provisional pilotage plans to vessels and VTS prior to Pilot embarkation”.


With an increase in ultra large vessels arriving via the Sunk Pilot station, the Authority would like to provide additional information to assist masters and bridge teams in their passage planning process (appraisal, planning, execution and monitoring).

This document aims to help develop a better ‘shared mental model’ of the period under pilotage and reduce the chances of a ‘single point of failure’.

Although constructed with a primary focus on Ultra Large Vessels (defined by the Authority as any vessel over 310m LOA), many elements apply to any vessel required to take a Haven pilot at the Sunk Pilot Station and Masters/ bridge teams are advised to take due consideration of factors mentioned herein that may be pertinent for their vessels.

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