ABP Southampton helps keep the Solent safe during Lendy Cowes Week

August 7, 2018

 ABP Southampton has the challenge of managing all of the traffic that flows through the port during this year’s Lendy Cowes Week, which sees 8,500 competitors. out on the water.

The Regatta stages up to 40 daily races for 850 boats across the whole event and is the largest sailing regatta of its kind in the world. During this sporting event, the Solent remains open to all of the usual commercial vessels passing through, including bulk, container ships, car carriers, cruise ships, ferries and naval vessels as well as smaller leisure boats.

In the lead up and during Cowes Week each year, ABP Southampton works closely with the Regatta organisers to help ensure this annual event goes without a hitch. The responsibility rests with Captain Phil Buckley, Harbour Master at the Port of Southampton, the Queen’s Harbour Master in Portsmouth, and the Cowes Harbour Master, to ensure the safety of all harbour users.

Captain Phil Buckley said: "We’re very experienced in handling large amounts of Cowes Week traffic and our highly professional pilots and experienced marine teams are crucial to these plans.

“We work closely with race organisers to make sure race courses, temporary moorings and timings can all be accommodated with the big ships that operate in the port. Plans include the setting of temporary speed limits at busy times such as the Friday night fireworks.

“Through working together, our aim is to ensure a safe and enjoyable Cowes Week for everyone on the Solent.”

ABP Southampton has an active presence both on the water and ashore with race organisers throughout the event. This includes positioning a pilot on the starting platform each day to help coordinate race and commercial traffic. The port will continue to work around the clock to ensure traffic moves smoothly through the Solent.

ABP Southampton is the Statutory Harbour Authority for most of the water between Cowes and Southampton and is one of the busiest ports in the UK. It is the second largest container port in the UK and the number one cruise port. In one year the port sees 10,000 ships and ABP’s Vessel Traffic Service manages around 150,000 traffic moves in the Solent each year.