Forecast terminology
Date issue released
Safety Issue Description

Fremantle Ports’ staff did not understand the significance of some wind and weather terminology used in the BoM forecast. Consequently, port procedures triggered by a BoM ‘gale’ or ‘severe weather’ warning such as preparing the tugs and calling the harbour master were not followed.

Issue number
Transport Function
Marine: Shipboard operations
Issue Owner
Fremantle Port Authority (Fremantle Ports)
Mode of Transport
Issue Status Justification

Fremantle Ports’ revised procedures in combination with the new weather information system and equipment will allow the port to better manage adverse weather events.

Proactive action
Action number
Fremantle Ports
Action date
Action Status
Action description

Fremantle Ports advised the ATSB that the harbour master issued instruction HM01/14 on 29 August 2014 to clarify the berthing parameters for ships using NQ12 Common User Berth. The port’s procedures and its ship warning notice have been updated to include:

  • the wind speed in conjunction with the term strong wind warning and gale force winds,
  • the addition of the term ‘severe thunderstorm’ with the wind speed,
  • the advice that gust strength may be 40 per cent higher than the predicted wind speed,
  • the warning that ships could experience sudden and excessive surge due to water movement.