Average large vessel transit speeds through the Gulf are approaching the internationally-recognised target speed of 10 knots.
A meeting in September of a collaborative working group set up to address ship strike of Bryde’s whales found average speed to be 10.9 knots, which should reduce the chances of collisions and also the lethality of strikes by around 50 percent.
The Gulf’s resident whale population was suffering an average of two deaths per year before the group was established to find urgent solutions. Only one death has been reported since Ports of Auckland Ltd introduced a voluntary protocol in September 2013.
The group, supported by the Hauraki Gulf Forum, will share data on vessel speeds each quarter.