Panama Canal Facts

  1. Size of Locks:
    1. Maximum Size For Panamax Locks
      1. Maximum Transit Draft: 12.04 meters (39 feet, 6 inches) Tropical Fresh Water.
      2. Maximum Beam: 32.31 meters (106 feet).
      3. Maximum Overall Length: 294.13 meters (965 feet) for passenger and container vessels.
      4. Maximum Airdraft: 57.91 meters (190 feet) at any tide, 62.48 meters (205 feet) at low tide with special approval from the ACP authorities.
      5. VesseIs are classified as supers when they are 27.74 meters (91 feet) in beam or over, and regular when they are under 27.74 meters 91 feet) in beam.
    2. Maximum Size for NeoPanamax Locks
      1. 366 meters / 1200 ft (long)
      2. 49 meters / 160 ft (wide)
      3. 15.2 meters / 50 ft (deep)

      These Locks allow for Post Container Vessels, Passanger Vessels, Suezmax Liquid Bulk Tankers, Capesize Dry-bulk Carriers, Large Liquefied Natural Gass-Carriers, and other vessels falling within the established dimensions. C5

  2. Daylight Restriction for Vessels:
  3. There are vessels that can only navigate The Panama Canal in daylight hours. This Vessels have the folIowing characteristics:

    1. Vessels classified as supers (with beam of27.74 meters or 91 feet or over).
    2. If the draft is over 11.58 meters or 38 feet.
    3. If they are loaded with dangerous cargo (PDl cargo).
  4. Booking System:
  5. A paid reservation for transiting on a specific date.

    1. Required arrival time for super and regular vessels transiting under restrictions is 0200 hours the day of transit.
    2. Required arrival time for regular vessels not transiting under restrictions is 1400 hours the day of transit.
    3. The booking will be assigned to the customer with the best Customer Ranking whenever 2 or more customers compete for the same transit date.
  6. Vessel Pre-Booking Periods:
  7. Days before transiting of your vessel to apply for a booking.

    1. First Period 365 to 22 days prior to the requested transit date.
    2. Second Period 21 to 4 days prior to the requested transit date.
    3. Third Period 3 to 2 days prior to the requested transit date.
  8. Charges for Cancelled Booking:
    1. Over 365 days 10% of booking fee or $500
    2. 365 to over 180 days 20% of booking fee or $600
    3. 180 to over 90 days 40% of booking fee or $900
    4. 90 to over 30 days 50% of booking fee or $1,100
    5. 30 to over 3 days 60% of booking fee or $1,300
    6. 72 hours to 36 hours 80% of booking fee or $1,600
    7. Less than 36 hours 100% of booking fee
  9. Auction System:
  10. Allocates one booking slot per day on auction. Minimum daily bid $35,000/Supers (over 91’ beam - $15,000/Regulars (under 91’ beam) & auction closes at 1330 daily.

  11. Dangerous Cargo:
  12. The regulation on Navigation in Panama Canal Waters require a minimum of 96 hours notice of intent to transit with dangerous cargo.

    The specific characteristics of the dangerous cargo, whether in bulk or packaged, are the primary factors which determine what, if any,precautionary measures shall be taken by the Canal Authority.

    For your information all IMO cargos are acceptable for transit at Panama Canal.

    However, the reporting of Material Hazardous in bulk (IMSBC) and IMO cargos no. 6.7(nuclear) requires additional documentation which can be found in the ACP Notice to Shipping requirements N-1-2012, page 47, section 16.