Draft Restrictions

Draft Restrictions

Under Keel Clearances

Since the 1960's increasing ship size has placed greater demands on marine pilots when manoeuvring ships within the limited confines of Moreton Bay. In some parts of Moreton Bay there is now less than one metre clearance between the ship's keel and the seabed. These ships could be more than 250 metres in length and more than 40 metres wide.

This places great demands on the pilot to ensure the safety of life, the marine environment, the port's infrastructure and the safety of the ship.

Channel Depths
Moreton Bay – deep channels* 15.0 m
Entrance Channel to Pelican Banks 14.0 m
Brisbane River - Upstream Pelican Banks 9.1 m
Check latest Notice to Mariners for depth information

*shallower channels may be used if draft permits.
Under Keel Clearance
Moreton Bay, Entrance Channel to Pelicans Banks Minimum UKC varies depending on route taken. UKC requirement increases in the northern end of the Bay where waves and swell have a greater effect.
DUKC – the Port of Brisbane operate a Dynamic Under Keel Clearance program for deep draft vessel transits of Moreton Bay. The program is installed and operated from Port Control – ‘Brisbane Harbour’. DUKC transits are run for tankers and bulk carriers with draft >12.5m and other vessels with draft >12.0m
Brisbane River A minimum UKC of 0.6m is required, increasing with draft.
Alongside Vessels must maintain a UKC of at least 0.3m when alongside any berth
Speed Limits
Moreton Bay 40 kts
Entrance Beacons to Luggage Point 13 kts
Brisbane River Upstream Luggage Point. 8 kts
Passing moored vessel in river. 6 kts
NOTE: speeds may be restricted due to UKC, operational requirements or port restrictions.


Virtual Passage Plan

See the Virtual Passage Plan for more information on the passage that ships take to dock in Brisbane