Preliminary ice forecast for new winter season 2018 -2019 for Gulf of Finland


Some provisional ice forecast conditions for the new winter season 2018-2019 on the Gulf of Finland around areas of St.Petersburg, Ust-Luga and Vyborg/Vysotsk.

BIMCO has received some ice information for the forthcoming winter 2018-2019, It will develop as moderate type winter. The ice growth progresses and thickness will be close to mean annual ones.

The beginning of the ice formation in Neva Bay (inner harbour of St.Petersburg) is expected at the second half of November 2018,  which is close to mean annual periods. The ice formation will however be slow and with interruptions.

Intensive ice formation in Neva Bay is forecasted from the end of December 2018 – beginning on January 2019.

The expected time of appearance of drifting ice:

up to the Moshchnyy island (027 49E / abt 50nm off from roads of St.Petersburg)
– week 01-02 / beginning of January 2019

To the longitude of Gogland island (027 00E // abt 80 nm off from roads of st.pete)  
- week 04-05th / end of January 2019.

The maximum development of the ice conditions will be reached in the beginning of March 2019,  which is close to mean annual periods. In that period the fast ice 40 – 60 cm thick is expected in the harbours of the Port of St.Petersburg and up to the Kronshtadt dam / outer road of St. Petersburg.

Further up to the Moshchnyy Island (027 49E / about 50nm off from roads of St.Petersburg), there will be very close, hummocked ice 30-50 cm thick.

Further to the longitude of Gogland Island (027 00E / about 80nm off from roads of St.Petersburg), close drifting, partly ridged ice 20 - 45 cm thick is expected.

Further up to the longitude of Tallinn (024 45E)  – open, drifting ice thickness 15-30 cm is expected.

Very preliminarily ice restrictions (for the min ice class) may be expected not earlier than middle-end of January 2019 (week 03-05). In any case this will be officially advised 14 days in advance.

Port call of restricted vessels will not be approved by Harbour Master, exceptions only for vessels with DWT more than 30,000 and age less then 15 years with special Ice Safety Certificate issued by Russian Register.

Local ice breakers fleet will standby to assist in the forthcoming ice traffic to ports of St.Petersburg, Vysotsk, Primorsk, Vyborg and Ust-Luga.

There are 7 liner ice breakers: ‘kapitan sorokin’, ‘ermak’, ‘sant-petersburg’, ‘kapitan nokolaev’, ‘murmansk’, ‘moskva’ and ‘novorossiysk’ . In case of severe ice season, there will be 2 additional liner ice breakers: ‘kapitan dranitsyn’ + ‘vladivostok’.

There are 7 port ice breakers: ‘mudjug’, ‘semen degnev’, ‘ivan kruzenshtern’, ‘kapitan plakhin’, ‘karu’, 'kapitan izmailov',  ‘yuriy lisyansky’

HM office warning:

Every ship, navigating in ice, shall have available all the necessary supplies of fuel, fresh water and provisions for at least 20 days. All ships proceeding in ice conditions to and out of the sea port when in ice convoy with ice-breaker shall ensure manual mode of the main engine control whenever necessary. Ship’s company manual must have ice clause (instructions from Owners). In case of its absence, Port State Control ( PSC/MoU) may penalise the master/vessel.

For updated ice conditions report/forecast, please visit home page:


Ai Cheng Foo-Nielsen
in Copenhagen, DK


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