Pre-storm protocol for Simpson Bay bridges

SIMPSON BAY–Port St. Maarten reminds boat owners and mariners of its protocols for pre-storm/hurricane preparations for the Simpson Bay Bridge and Causeway in connection with the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season.

  All vessels wishing to enter/exit the Simpson Bay Lagoon should prepare well in advance to come through the bridges. Listen out on marine radio VHF Channel 12 or local radio stations, if there are any changes to or added bridge openings.

  Regular Simpson Bay Bridge opening times are 8:30am outbound, 9:30am inbound; 10:30am outbound, 11:30am inbound, 3:00pm inbound, 4:00pm outbound, and 5:00pm inbound. Regular Causeway opening times are 10:00am, 11:45am, and 3:30pm. Bridges will not open above wind speeds of 25 knots per hour.

  The Simpson Bay Lagoon should not be considered as a safe haven, said the Port. Vessels that wish to enter the lagoon in the event of a storm are urged to do so in a timely manner. Commercial cargo vessels should not seek refuge in the lagoon.

  The best place to secure vessels in the event of a storm/hurricane is a boatyard or on land. Mariners are urged by the Port to make appointments with boat yards for haul out.

  Vessel owners should ensure all loose objects or potential projectiles – sails, awnings, and fenders – are removed from the vessel and secured below deck.

  Anchored vessels should have enough ground tackle that is sufficient for any expected weather conditions, and all lines have chafing gear.

  Boat owners are responsible for their property and may be held liable for damages to other person’s property/livelihood, said the Port.

  For more information, e-mail: or call VHF Channel 12 and in the event of emergency call +1 721 520-2059.


Source: The Daily Herald