Marine insurance advisory board, the Joint War Committee (JWC), has listed areas near Russia and Ukraine as places to avoid temporarily
As tensions between Russia and Ukraine intensify, with increased Russian naval drills in the waters near Crimea, the JWC has added sections of the northern Black Sea to the master list of areas that are likely to become war, piracy or terrorism zones.
Better safe than sorry
According to a report by Ukraine newspaper Pravda Ukraine, access to the key seaport of Odessa has been effectively cut off by the Russian naval drill. Based on the Russian drill announcement, the exclusion zone extends up to the edge of the Dneipr Bank, which most ships do not navigate due to the risk of grounding.
Although the State Department of Maritime and River Transport of Ukraine Ministry of Transport and Communications of Ukraine has established a corridor to ensure safe entry for merchant ships into the Black Sea ports of Ukraine on 15 February, there is only a 1,000 meter corridor between the edge of the exercise zone and the edge of the shoal and the depth is confirmed at the level of 15-22.5 meters.
While there is no evident outbreak of war at this moment, as a precautionary measure, the JWC has decided to list Ukrainian and Russian waters in the Black sea and the Sea of Azov as places to steer clear until further notice. Seafarers should do well to take note if passing through these areas.
Joint Committee Circular
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