208 - 09/01- Current Operational Status of US Ports


We have been advised, that as of 14th September 2001, a number of ports in the US have  restrictions. Mariners are advised to check with the local USCG Captain of the Port (COTP) and/or agent well in advance of arrival/departure, as the restrictions may change without notice. Vessels may not enter a security or safety zone without USCG permission.

The following list is not exhaustive:

Baltimore - security zone established for Inner Harbour.

Cape Canaveral - security zone established.

Charleston - security zone established around USCG base.



- periodic security zone around certain vessels in transit.

Honolulu - no restrictions currently in place.


- advance notice of arrival to include last three ports, full crew list - including nationality, rank, and embarkation date - is to be sent at least 72 hours in advance. Chemical tankers must supply a stowage plan with their advance notice. Moving safety zones will be established around vessels carrying liquefied gases.

Key West - security zones established around tankers and cruise ships.

Kings Bay - security zone established.

Los Angeles/Long Beach

- USCG will board all deep draught vessels entering the port and will escort all outbound vessels.

Miami - security zones established around tankers and cruise ships.

New Orleans - a safety zone from the seabuoy at SW Pass and S Pass at the mouth of the Mississippi River to mile marker 233 Above Head of Passes. Ocean-going vessels must provide with their notice of arrival, a crew list containing name, nationality and rank, and of cargoes on board. All movement within the zone must be preceded by notification to the USCG. Vessels carrying oil, chemicals or hazardous materials as cargo must provide continuous roving patrols while moored alongside.

New York/New Jersey

- reopened with restrictions. Large vessels restricted when transiting to Ambrose and Sandy Hook channels and must successfully complete a USCG safety inspection, have a certified harbour pilot on board, be under escort from two authorised tugs and have confirmation that the berth is ready to receive the vessel. Anchoring within the port is only possible with USCG approval. The area around southern Manhattan Island may not be entered without specific USCG approval. This security zone extends from the northern end of Governor's Island to the Holland Tunnel ventilators on the Hudson River and the Manhattan Bridge on the East River. Delays should be expected.

Palm Beach - security zones established around tankers and cruise ships.

Philadelphia - commercial vessels transiting Delaware Bay or the C&D Canal, or arranging a pilot must first obtain permission from USCG.

Port Everglades

- security zones established around tankers and cruise ships.


- all commercial vessels >300grt must notify USCG COTP prior to arrival at any port or anchorage between Manomet Point MA and Watch Hill RI, or transit through the Cape Cod Canal. Vessels carrying hazardous cargoes will be treated as high risk and must undergo a safety assessment prior to entry.

Puget Sound - USCG will screen all arriving commercial vessels. Security measures will be adopted as required.

San Diego - USCG will examine all vessels, commercial and leisure, prior to entry.

San Francisco Bay - USCG is inspecting deep draught vessels prior to entry. Up to date info can be found on the MSO San Francisco website:


St. Lawrence Seaway - vessels other than US or Canadian flagged will be inspected prior to transit through the Snell and Eisenhower Locks.

Tampa - all vessels entering, departing or moving in the port must obtain prior permission from USCG COTP and Tampa Vessel Traffic Advisory System. All passenger vessels and vessels carrying hazardous materials will be boarded and escorted by USCG.

Valdez - reopened, but security measures will be taken as required.



- security zone established upstream from Woodrow Wilson Bridge.

Wilmington - security measures will be taken as required.

Other Alaskan Ports

- security measures will be taken as required.

The Whitehouse has established an Attack Response:


However, the USCG are not linked to this site, they can be found on:


The Secretary of Transport has issued a press release relating to airport status:


Source of Information: USCG & Haight Gardner Holland & Knight


Staff Author