Drones to help with port area controls

Drones to help with port area controls

Drones will be used to support enforcement and control in the Antwerp port area. To this end, Port of Antwerp and the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) have joined forces.

Use of drones for enforcement

The port of Antwerp covers more than 120km² and contains sensitive industrial infrastructure. The use of drones can make a major contribution to overall safety in this complex environment. After all, drones enable port authorities to manage, inspect and supervise a large area quickly and safely.

This is why Port of Antwerp, in collaboration with the FPS Mobility and Transport, has concluded an agreement with EMSA. The drone pilot will accompany Port Authority Officers during their enforcement tasks, and provide them with a bird's-eye view of the situation on the ground. The images can also be accessed remotely, so they can be shared quickly with emergency services if necessary. Privacy is paramount here: the images are only used for monitoring purposes and are not stored.

The drone will not only be used during regular checks, but also in the event of incidents in order to gain a quick insight into the situation. The imagery of oil incidents will also be used by the University of Antwerp to train algorithms to automatically detect oil incidents in the future.

Increasing role of drones

According to Port of Antwerp, the use of drones will play an increasingly important role in the port of the future. As part of Port of Antwerp's participation in the SAFIR project, extensive tests have already been carried out to investigate the feasibility of manned and unmanned drones at the port. The ultimate goal of these projects is a network of autonomous drones that can provide a ‘live feed’ of the various port activities, in the context of a smart, safe and efficient port.  

Paul Wauters, Harbour Master at Port of Antwerp: “This collaboration with EMSA allows us to use new technologies in our enforcement, in order to respond to incidents more quickly and to create a safer port for port users.”
Port alderman Annick De Ridder: “We are doing everything we can to ensure a safe port and drones will become indispensable for this in the near future, including at our port. Innovation is crucial to guarantee the sustainable growth of our port in the long term. This collaboration also confirms that the port is the ideal environment in which to test and further develop innovative technology.”

 

About Port of Antwerp-Bruges

With an overall throughput of 289 million tonnes per year, Port of Antwerp-Bruges is a critical hub in worldwide trade and industry. The port is a crucial link for the handling of containers, breakbulk and for the throughput of vehicles. Port of Antwerp-Bruges is home to 1,400 companies and accommodates the largest integrated chemical cluster in Europe. The port provides, directly and indirectly, a total of around 164,000 jobs and generates an added value of 21 billion euros.
 
The ambition for Port of Antwerp-Bruges is clear - to become the world's first port that reconciles economy, people and climate. As well as growing in a sustainable way, the Port also aims to focus on its unique position as a logistics, maritime and industrial centre and to take the lead in the transition to a circular and low-carbon economy. Together with the port community, customers and other partners, Port of Antwerp-Bruges is actively seeking innovative solutions for a sustainable future. High on the agenda is its responsibility for the environment and the surrounding society. 

The port sites of Antwerp and Zeebrugge are operated by the Antwerp-Bruges Port Authority, a limited liability company of public law with the City of Antwerp and the City of Bruges as its shareholders. The port employs 1,800 people. Vice-Mayor of Antwerp Annick De Ridder is President of the Board of Directors, the Mayor of Bruges Dirk De fauw is the Vice-President. Jacques Vandermeiren is CEO and President of the Executive Committee, which is responsible for the port’s day-to-day management. 

www.portofantwerpbruges.com

The telephone number +32 492 15 41 39 is only for press inquiries. For other questions you can mail to [email protected]

Port of Antwerp-Bruges
Havenhuis
Zaha Hadidplein 1
2030 Antwerp
Belgium