Wild weather and heavy seas shut down Australia’s Port Botany terminal today (23 September) with the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) issuing a marine wind warning for the Sydney, Hunter and Illawarra coasts until midnight tomorrow.
NSW Ports Authority suspended pilotage for Port Botany and Sydney Harbour due to heavy swell and gale force winds.
“The Sydney Vessel Traffic Service has a watching brief on the rough sea conditions,” a spokesperson told IHS Maritime. “Three tankers were affected as a result of today’s suspension of pilot services.”
However pilotage at Port Kembla was not affected, he said.
At Newcastle coal port the duty Pilot has classified the entrance to the harbour as “heavy restricted in, restricted out.”
The BOM issued marine gale warnings and hazardous seas to continue tomorrow until midnight Eastern Standard Time Thursday 24 September, with further disruptions to shipping expected.
In April 13 m swells and heavy rain forced the closure of Sydney Harbour and every commercial port across NSW.
A Carnival Cruise ship was stuck outside Sydney Heads unable to enter the harbour for two days.
While pilotage was also suspended at Sydney Harbour today, no cruise ships were scheduled, with only ferry services were affected by the weather.