In Sweden, specific areas are exempted from the obligation to use a pilot in waters otherwise subject to compulsory pilotage in accordance with the Pilot Regulations.
The Swedish Transport Agency establishes regulations on pilotage in the Swedish territorial waters. As a general principle, the use of pilot is compulsory in the Swedish internal waters (landward of the baseline) based on the dimensions of the vessel and the cargo it is carrying. Valid regulations are found in The Swedish Transport Agency’s Regulations and General Advice (TSFS 2012:38) on Pilotage.
The Pilot Regulations describe specific areas exempted from the obligation to use a pilot in waters otherwise subject to compulsory pilotage in accordance with the regulations. Such exemptions are called area exemptions.
Today there are 18 area exemptions in force in Sweden.
What factors determine an area exemption?
Area exemptions are determined by area and traffic. Sometimes an area exemption is also subject to specific conditions.
Area refers to the area where the exemption is valid. An area can be defined by one or more distances connecting two or more locations (e.g. anchorages, berths or sections of ports). An area may also be a fairway or a section of a fairway. Unless otherwise specified, the exemptions apply to transfers and passages in both directions along the distances, in the fairways and in the sections of fairways.
Traffic refers to the vessels, barges and towed units which are subject to compulsory pilotage in areas that may be exempted. The traffic may be limited regarding size, cargo, compulsory pilotage category or other circumstances.
An area exemption may be subject to conditions. When using an area exemption, the master must be aware of these conditions.
Shipping movements in port
When an area exemption is used for making transfers in a port, the transfers shall be made by the shortest possible route in consideration of maritime safety, the current traffic situation and the manoeuvring space needed.
Indication of exempted areas
The areas covered by area exemptions are described in text as well as graphically, in the form of chart extracts where exempted areas are indicated by a green pattern. The indications are approximate and do not indicate an exact geographical area where the exemption is valid.