Photo and text by Port of KlaipeidaKlaipeda is one among few seaports in Europe, where maritime pilots are able to carry out operations in remote mode. As it is attempted to avoid contact with other persons as much as possible during the quarantine, several trials have already been performed in the seaport. They revealed that such assistance for the vessels sailing in Klaipeda Port is effective and safe.
"We have been considering such a possibility for a while already; however, the quarantine moods predominant in the world have accelerated the process. The manager of the Vessel Traffic Service of the Port Authority and its IT specialists gathered together to find a way, how a vessel could be manoeuvred without getting into the vessel",– said Adomas Alekna, Klaipeda Harbour Master about the “know-how” principle under implementation in Klaipeda Port.
Approx. 7 000 vessels enter Klaipeda Port every year – the majority of them are met by maritime pilots before crossing the gate to the port. This employee of the Port Authority gets from the boat into the vessel and connects his equipment there to help the vessel’s captain to enter the vessel into the port safely.
"The recent trials show that it is possible to help the vessel to sail in remote mode, as well. The maritime pilot can work while staying in the boat of maritime pilots or in his work place in the Vessel Traffic Service. It is not necessary to get into the manoeuvred vessel. This system is functioning perfectly, we have already helped the vessels to enter or exit the port, and to moor them by the quay. The maritime pilots of Klaipeda Port help approx. 25 vessels a day on average to enter or exit Klaipeda Port", – said A. Alekna.
At present the Port Authority is using some 30 different digital programmes that provide a possibility to organize the processes in the port in remote mode.
"The port that has the most state-of-the-art technologies will have more advantages in the competition. Strategically, Klaipeda Port is an object important for the country, thus we are always improving the present information systems of the port and instilling innovative solutions. Today we cannot imagine our activities without a Freight Movement Information System (KIPIS) that has made work easier and simpler. The Vessel Traffic Management Information System (LUVIS) allows paying port dues from any part of the world. The agents do not need to go to ports carrying paper documents any more. This helps to control the vessels in the port expeditiously, reduces downtimes of cargoes and vehicles in the port, and allows using the current infrastructure of the port more effectively", – such is the opinion about digitization in the seaport expressed by Vidmantas Paukštė, Director for Infrastructure of the Port Authority, Managing Director at interim.
One more digital system that facilitates processes in the port is the miscellaneous spatial system of digital map "PortGIS" installed in the port several years ago. It does not simply facilitate work to specialists of various areas, but also contributes to modernization and digitization of the processes in the port and helps to guarantee its safety. Klaipeda Seaport Authority received an award in San Diego (USA) for achievements in installation of geoinformation systems.