Development of Standards for the dimensions of Recreation Navigation Waterways

Development of Standards for the dimensions of Recreation Navigation Waterways Sport and pleasure navigation is an international business. Yachts and motorboats built in the U.S.A. for instance, are exported to European countries and elsewhere. Recreational navigation still is a booming business. People get more holidays and are willing to spend their leisure time on the…

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Development of Standards for the dimensions of Recreation Navigation Waterways Sport and pleasure navigation is an international business. Yachts and motorboats built in the U.S.A. for instance, are exported to European countries and elsewhere. Recreational navigation still is a booming business. People get more holidays and are willing to spend their leisure time on the water. One likes to make long trips and wants to discover foreign countries and sail across borders. There is a growing interest for round trips, which results in an increasing demand for international waterway networks for recreational navigation. For this purpose old waterways are renovated or even re-opened. Since recreational navigation is of major importance as a tourist asset, restrictions imposed by waterways can represent a significant drawback for regions, which are dependent upon tourism for their development and income. These opportunities are threatened by the construction of more and more roads and fixed bridges. Generally the waterway dimensions pose no problems, but locks and bridges mostly form bottlenecks. Considering the interdependence of a vessel and channel characteristics, it is clearly desirable that universally applicable standards are established for waterways used for sport and recreational navigation. Such standards do not exist. Therefore, the Permanent Commission for Sport and Recreational Navigation of PIANC set up a working group to conduct research on the subject of standards for the use of inland waterways by recreational craft. The working group was not able to conduct specific research for coastal waterways and estuaries and by necessity limited the research to inland navigation. Commercial vessels for pleasure navigation and tourism such as cruise boats, hotel boats and boats for day trips were neither taken into consideration, despite their importance for recreation. The dimensions of such vessels usually fit in the existing classes for commercial navigation.

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