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Safe Port

Safety on the water in Rotterdam

The Harbour Master's Division (DHMR) is responsible for the safe, smooth, clean and secure handling of shipping in the port of Rotterdam. The Harbour Master’s Division is part of the Port of Rotterdam Authority. It oversees safety on the water, by order of the Rotterdam Municipality and the Dutch government. With modern patrol boats and a high-tech traffic control system, the Harbour Master's Division supervises and controls shipping traffic, day and night. As an official emergency service the Harbour Master's Division, together with the other aid agencies, is charged with safeguarding continuity and safety of shipping traffic and the surrounding areas.

How the Harbour Master's Division works

  • Harbour Coordination Centre: the Harbour Coordination Centre controls planning and access of vessels.
  • Vessel traffic service operators: from two traffic control centres the traffic service operators monitor all vessels which enter and leave the port of Rotterdam or travel through it. The operators can track the vessels on their radars and maintain contact with them.
  • Harbour patrol boats: the patrol boats, RPA vessels, are responsible for inspection and enforcement on the water. If necessary the patrol boats guide vessels physically and assist vessels in the event of incidents.
  • Inspection: inspectors from the Harbour Master’s Division check whether vessels comply with the shipping regulations concerning environment and safety. In the event of incorrect or unsafe actions, measures are taken. In addition, systematic checks are carried out to make sure shipping companies and agents comply with the statutory administrative reporting obligations. In accordance with the Harbour Master’s Covenant, the Harbour Master has set standards for the Safety Environmental Index (SEI).
  • Port Health Authority: the Harbour Master is a member of the Port Health Authority. In the event of epidemics on board, the Port Health Authority advises and guides vessels.
  • Port Security: the Harbour Master is responsible for Port Security.

Drones in the port of Rotterdam

Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) or drones are becoming increasingly popular. Still, you are not allowed to fly a drone wherever you like. For safety reasons, anyone operating a drone needs to abide by the rules, and in many cases, you need to have a permit.

A safe and accessible port of Rotterdam. Both today and in the future!

Our mission is to ensure that the port is a safe and healthy environment, to limit climate change and to create employment opportunities. In 2015 and 2016, we performed the Botlek Water Safety pilot project, which examined potential consequences for the Botlek area of flooding as a result of climate change.

Safety on land

By order of the Rotterdam Municipality and the Province of South-Holland, the DCMR Environmental Protection Agency Rijnmond (DCMR) and Safety Region Rotterdam Rijnmond (VRR) oversee safety on land. The Port of Rotterdam Authority participates actively in incident control in and around the port.

E-noses for a safe port

The port of Rotterdam has a unique system of e-noses: the we-nose network. The we-nose network makes a significant contribution towards improving the safety, health and appeal of the port area and its environs.

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