New maritime traffic control centre opens in Koper

Koper – A new centre for maritime traffic control and management in crisis situations was inaugurated in Koper on Friday in what is a project that is expected to greatly improve navigation safety in the Slovenian territorial waters and decrease risk of accidents by as much as 70%.

Infrastructure Minister Jernej Vrtovec said at the ceremony that the EUR 2.3 million centre, stationed in the Maritime Administration building in Koper, was not only important for the Slovenian maritime sector, but for the country as a whole.

It is a further step towards establishing a vessel traffic service (VTS) system that provides greater safety in the Slovenian territorial waters, Vrtovec added about the investment that has been supported by EU funds.

The minister noted that the event preceded the upcoming celebration of Slovenian Maritime Day and the related 30th anniversary of the national resolution on maritime strategy.

Maritime Administration director Jadran Klinec noted that greater safety at sea was important from the aspect of the planned enlargement of the port of Koper, to which the safety aspect needed to be adjusted.

New sensors and tools enable the operators to have greater control of what is happening in and around the port, while the centre also has a radio frequency finder that will be able to detect the source of radio signals to locate smaller vessels.

The video surveillance centre will enable search and rescue by means of thermographic camera and long-range cameras, and several new radio receiver spots will be established, and weather sensors set up at eleven locations along the sea coast.

A radar for detection of vessels and oil spills has been set up on the Debeli Rtič peninsula that will enable rapid response in the case of accidents in the bays of Koper and Trieste, Klinec said.