Panama, October 1.

The Panama Maritime Authority, PMA, currently instructs staff from the Directorate of Ports and Auxiliary Maritime Industries and from the Directorate of Seafarers on the new System of Maritime Dispositions that Panama will implement on December 1st. This new system is called Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS).

In May 2014, the Maritime Safety Committee of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) approved the proposal submitted by Panama of setting 4 Devices of Traffic Separation: one in the Atlantic side, at the entrance of the Panama Canal and 3 in the Pacific side. Coastal protection zones are also established in ecologically vulnerable sites.

With the establishment of these Maritime Traffic Separation Schemes, Panama is brought into line with most of the countries, especially the most industrialized ones. The TSS helps organizing the traffic of ships in areas of great affluence.  Compliance with the international commitments made by Panama, in questions of environmental protection, will become effective, such as the Maritime Corridor, which includes Las Perlas Archipelago and the Galapagos Islands; and the RAMSAR Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, especially as Waterfowl Habitat, which was signed by our country in 1990.

Additionally – as a main inspiring reason – with the help of the approved Traffic Separation Devices, the life of the humpback whales will be protected. These whales visit the coast of our country and especially the area of Las Perlas Islands to mate and to give birth to their calves.

The training, that was conducted by the deputy chief of the Department of Labor Affairs at the Directorate of Seafarers, Mrs. Rosa Maria Aguirre, was attended by 16 public servants that work in the Departments of Port Operations, Port Panama, the Department of Port Safety and Hygiene, the Department of Pollution Prevention, The Department of Quality Management, the Department of Resolutions and Consultations, and the Department of Maritime Labor Affairs. Also a guest from the Unit of Transit Operation at the Panama Canal Authority attended the training.

This is the second occasion this kind of training on the Traffic Separation Devices is held - virtual routes that ships must transit and whose coordinates soon will be indicated on the navigation charts.