The maximum size conventional vessel acceptable for entry in the Port of Newcastle is LOA 300m, beam 50m.
The maximum size vessel acceptable for entry to The Basin area is LOA 265m, beam 35m.
The entrance to the port is subject to swell conditions and on an average of 3-5 days a year the port may be closed due to bad weather. Vessels are piloted day and night subject to the pilot code and depending on the wind conditions.
Vessels over LOA 290m are restricted to entering harbour in daylight only.
Vessels LOA 250-300m scheduled to enter at night are subject to low swell and wind conditions.
Minimum UKC: All vessels moving within the channels of the port shall have a min UKC of 10% of the vessels deepest draught.
Whilst occupying a berth within the port the UKC of the vessel shall not be less than 0.3m. It is the responsibility of the vessel's Master to ensure the above clearances are maintained.
Ballast condition: All vessels in ballast or part cargo condition, requiring a pilot and navigating within the port shall be ballasted and trimmed to ensure, where practicable, minimum draughts are ford 2% of LOA and aft 3% of LOA, that the propeller is fully immersed and total trim should not exceed 1% of LOA.
Vessels up to LOA 240m are generally handled in winds up to 35kts, vessels over 240m may not be handled in winds over 25kts. For vessels over LOA 250m, ballast condition is deemed not to exceed 11.0m deepest draught.
Stockton Bridge (32°53.1'S 151°47.2'E), a fixed span road bridge, crosses the N arm of the Hunter River between Kooragang Island and the Stockton peninsula. The navigation span of the bridge is located centrally between piers 11 and 12 where there is a navigable width of 60m between fenders and a vertical clearance of 30m.
Tourle Street Bridge (32°52.7'S 151°44.0'E) with a vertical clearance of 2.8m.
Speed limits of 8kts within the heads of the breakwaters and 6kts W of Pirate Point and in Stockton Channel N of Stockton Crossing are in force. In Basin Cut the speed limit is 4kts.
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