Fehmarn Belt Tunnel and charts
Construction activities in the Fehmarn Belt.
In connection with the establishment of a tunnel in the Fehmarn Belt, construction activities will take place at sea in the period July 2021 to 2027. The construction activities will be carried out along the tunnel's alignment between Rødbyhavn in Denmark and Puttgarden in Germany.
In addition, a working harbor will be established southeast of Rødbyhavn for work vessels and for use in the construction of tunnel elements. Land reclamation activities take place in larger areas along the coast northwest and southeast of Rødbyhavn. Finally, a smaller working harbor will be established east of Puttgarden.
In order to protect the construction activities in the Fehmarn Belt, areas with a ban on sailing (hereinafter referred to as work areas) are established. Access to the work areas is only permitted for ships involved in the construction activities. There will normally be construction activities in two work areas at a time. Work areas and associated markings are first moved as the tunnel trench is dug and then as the tunnel elements are submerged. Throughout the construction period, there will be frequent adjustments and relocations of the work areas.
The work areas are marked with yellow special markings equipped with a cross stop designation and light – N-straight work area Fl(3)Y. 10s and S-equal working area Fl(2+1)Y. 15p. The marking flashes synchronously in each work area. In addition, the corner markings in each work area will be equipped with AIS.
Information in the charts The nautical chart office under the Geodata Agency (GST) is responsible for publishing paper charts and electronic charts (ENC). The construction activities in connection with the establishment of the tunnel in the Fehmarn Belt are important for sea mapping and navigation. Today, both professional shipping and leisure sailors primarily use electronic charts as a basis for navigation. The two groups do not use the same electronic chart. Professional shipping uses ENC (produced by GST) in the ships' electronic chart display and information systems (ECDIS). Leisure sailors largely use electronic charts from private chart producers. The two groups' use of paper charts as a basis for navigation is greatly decreasing.
Below is information on how the frequent adjustments and relocations of the work areas are handled by GST in paper charts and electronic charts respectively.
Information in paper charts In the case of major construction projects, the publication of work areas will traditionally be done using sections of paper charts in the publication Søkortrettlerser. However, it will be problematic for GST to present the frequent adjustments and relocations of work areas in the Fehmarn Belt in the paper charts. With that approach, users will quickly find that there are several map sections inserted on top of each other in the part of the paper charts that cover the area where the tunnel is being constructed. As a consequence, GST will have to publish the paper charts of the Fehmarn Belt several times a year. The consequence for users will be high costs for acquiring paper charts.
Against this background, GST has decided that map sections will not be included in the publication Søkortrettelser when adjustments and relocations of work areas are made.
Information in electronic charts
GST will update the ENC over the Fehmarn Belt as the location of the work areas is adjusted and moved. The update of the ENC will take place on the basis of the plans for the work areas that GST receives from the contractor via the client of the tunnel construction. The professional users will be able to continuously load these ENC updates into the ships' ECDIS.
Users of ENC and the other electronic charts will, however, find that the real location of the work areas will not always agree with the location of the work areas in the electronic charts. There are several reasons for that problem.
Below is information for professional shipping and leisure sailors about the issues in relation to the electronic charts. Issues that the two groups must pay particular attention to.