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LTSA's dedicated portal for seafarers and inland waterway users – now also in English

Date

2022 03 30

Rating
1
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Lithuanian Transport Safety Administration's (LTSA) dedicated portal for seafarers and inland waterway users is now also available in English. It is a portal for shipping companies, ships, research institutions and all those involved and interested in shipping, providing up-to-date information on navigational conditions in the area of the Baltic Sea belonging to Lithuania and Lithuanian inland waters.

„Under the international Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), hydrographic authorities in all countries are obliged to publish hydrographic data and other relevant navigational information. Lithuanian version of the portal is a bit different from the others by as it also provides a larger number of interactive specialized navigational charts and maps. Also, you will not find so much concentrated, summarized, and free information on maritime safety in one place anywhere else”, – commented Linas Kasparavičius, Director of LTSA’s Maritime Department.

The information on the portal is published in both Lithuanian and English languages, as alongside Lithuanian-flagged ships there are also many ships from all around the world in Lithuanian waters. Information is provided by the Lithuanian Armed Forces, port administrations, shipping companies, terminal administrators, seaside municipalities, Klaipėda University, and other interested parties. Part of safety information is provided by LTSA and its work with hydrographic data which is collected during hydrographic surveying.

Some of the information that has a direct impact on maritime safety and relates to restrictions, such as navigational warnings and notices to seafarers, is published as soon as it becomes available. The other part is related to the production or correction of navigational publications. These publications, such as „Conditions of Navigation", „International Marking System",   „Symbols and Abbreviations Used in Navigational Charts (INT1)", „Lithuanian Navigational Marks and Lights", etc., are updated once a year or even more frequently.

„ Without a navigational chart of the area, the crew does not know what the navigational conditions are, for example, where there are hazards to navigation, where military exercises are taking place, etc. Seafarers can find it all on this portal. Its usefulness is also demonstrated by the number of active users. Since last year, when the portal was launched only in Lithuanian language, 50 applications have been received for free download of paper navigational charts, and more than 9,000 electronic navigational charts have been purchased from the Lithuanian distributors of navigational charts for 2021”, – said Director of Maritime Department, also adding that LTSA’s portal also provides additional information on navigation in the inland waters of the Republic of Lithuania based on data provided by inland waterway managers.

The software for the portal was purchased as part of the FAMOS project, co-financed by the Baltic Sea Hydrographic Offices and the EU. The content of the portal is published and reviewed by LTSA staff.