Rainfall has eliminated the need for a planned draught restriction of up to 11.89 m (39 ft) through the Panama Canal.
Suspension of the restriction, which was set to go into effect on 8 September, was announced by the Panama Canal Authority (ACP) on 28 August.
“Although the level of Gatun Lake is still well below normal levels for this time of the year, and the ‘El Nino’ phenomenon is still present in the region, the amount of rainfall received in the Canal Watershed during the last few days – in addition to the water conservation measures implemented and the works done to deepen the navigational channel – has made it possible for the Panama Canal to suspend the announced restriction,” ACP said in a statement.
Vessels will continue to be allowed to transit at their maximum Panama Canal approved draught up to 12.04 m (39.5 ft) Tropical Fresh Water until further notice, ACP noted.
The agency cautioned that restrictions may again be necessary if weather conditions change and the level of Gatun Lake begins to fall. ACP said it would provide at least four weeks’ notice of any resulting restriction.