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Safety & Security

Maintaining a reputation for industry-leading marine safety


The Prince Rupert Port Authority is responsible for the oversight of the Port’s integrated operations and their future expansion. It ensures that present and future operations are coordinated in a safe, sustainable and responsible manner.

A commitment to safe shipping is part of who we are. The foundation of the Port of Prince Rupert’s prosperity lies in the procedures designed to keep vessels moving safely — and goods flowing securely — in and out of Prince Rupert Harbour. As a result of planned terminal expansion and potential for new bulk terminals, the number of annual commercial vessel calls could exceed 1000 visits by the year 2020.

Planning for this growth is central to our mandate, and PRPA is evolving the practices and procedures required to maintain world-class navigational safety standards.

The Prince Rupert Port Authority is committed to going above and beyond its regulatory duties to ensure the safe, secure and environmentally-responsible movement of vessels and their cargoes through the Port.


The Port of Prince Rupert has one of the deepest ice-free harbours in the world. It possesses direct, unobstructed access to the commercial shipping lanes of the Pacific Ocean. The harbour, with its broad approach channels, is capable of handling all sizes and types of vessels used in Trans-Pacific trade.

Hundreds of commercial vessels call on the Port of Prince Rupert each year, andcoordinating their safe arrival and departure involves a team of partners working together. Local experts and organizations collaborate to apply industry leading practices in vessel handling and harbour safety.

Coordinated effort between the Canadian Coast Guard’s Marine Communications and Traffic Services, Pacific Pilotage Authority, BC Coast Pilots, SMIT Marine, Western Canada Marine Response Corporation, Canada Border Services Agency and the Prince Rupert Port Authority exerts positive control over every vessel, providing round-the-clock safeguards.

The result has been the evolution of a global reputation for navigational safety. As the number of vessels calling on the Port of Prince Rupert potentially doubles over the next decade, maintaining that reputation continues to be a priority.


PRPA places an emphasis on long-term planning, integrating activities and proactively defining and reducing risk. As part of its ongoing commitment to safe, responsible sustainable growth, PRPA is planning and preparing for new terminal developments, growth in vessel traffic, and potential new cargoes.

By applying international best-in-class procedures in the Port of Prince Rupert, and engaging with PRPA’s navigational service partners and local user groups to review its practices and procedures, the safety and efficiency of Port operations will continue to improve.

Potential measures being considered include:

• Safe transit zones for designated vessels such as LNG carriers

• Traffic separation patterns to define specific routes for specific types of vessels

• Increased use of escort vessels to ensure other vessels maintain safe distances

• Increased tug requirements to ensure safe vessel transit and provide for additional power and safety equipment if needed

• Enhancement of navigational aids and communication technology

• Established operating limits for conditions such as weather, visibility and daylight

By measuring risk, understanding challenges before they arrive, and having solutions in hand, PRPA remains prepared to safely accommodate any and all classes of ships within its diverse port complex, both today and in the future.