Panama Canal limits reservation numbers

Ongoing water problems in the Panama Canal have now seen the canal authority AMP temporarily limit the number of new reserved passage slots, in an attempt to ease a bottleneck of ships that were waiting to transit without reservations, the AMP said last Thursday August 10th.

A queue of commercial vessels seeking to pass through the canal appeared to have caused companies that would normally use the canal to look at the options for alternative routes.

As of August 10th there were 161 vessels some 70 more than the usual number during the rainy season, reported Reuters. Refinitiv Eikon data showed at least 40 more ships approaching the passage.

The AMP told customers last week that until August 21st it would be reduce the limit for new reservations for the canal’s old locks, used by smaller vessels, to 14 per day from 16 per day. It said that this would make room for uncooked ships. Booked transit through the largest locks would remain unaltered.

“This particular adjustment has been introduced to alleviate congestion for ships already in queue to transit or en route, who were unable to secure reservations beforehand,” the AMP said.

Panama also maintained a restriction of the total number of vessels allowed to pass to 32 per day, from 36 daily in normal conditions, and will continue limiting maximum draught to 44ft.