Harbour Control

Darwin Port is responsible for the efficient operations and control of vessel traffic entering, transiting and departing the Port of Darwin

Darwin Harbour Control provides a continuous traffic organisation service to monitor the movement of participating vessels within the Port of Darwin, to facilitate the safe and efficient passage of ships and to protect the environment and infrastructure of the port.

The traffic organisation service is based on information from radar, closed-circuit television, automatic identification systems (AIS) and VHF radio. All information sources and communications are recorded.

Darwin Harbour Control is operated to the standards set by the International Association of Lighthouse Authorities (IALA).

When VHF radio is used between vessels for the purpose of discussing and agreeing special passing arrangements in order to remove the risk of collision, such communications shall be conducted on channel10 to ensure that Darwin Harbour Control and other port users are aware of each vessel’s intention.

Darwin Harbour Control maintains a continuous listening watch on channels 16 (Distress, Safety and Calling) and 10 (primary port operations working channel) - 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

All vessels required to report to Darwin harbour control shall always maintain a listening watch on channels 16 and 10.

Additionally, all other vessels operating within the port limits shall maintain a listening watch on channel 10 whilst underway or at anchor.

VHF channels utilised within the port and their primary use is listed below.

Contact Harbour Control (24 hours)

Phone: +61 (8) 8919 0821
Email: HarbourControl@darwinport.com.au

Ship Scheduling

Ship scheduling services are conducted by the Darwin Port shipping scheduler.

Notification of Arrival (NOA) and pilot bookings should be lodged no later than 24 hours prior to the required service time, and between the hours of 0700 (7:00 AM) and 1500 (3:00 PM) Monday to Friday.  Requests for pilotage services should be made no later than 1400 (2:00 pm) on the day prior to the required service. Harbour control officers monitor NOA and pilotage requests outside of these hours and on public holidays.

Up to date shipping movement information can be found at portinfo.darwinport.com.au/webx

Contact Shipping Scheduler (7:00 AM to 3:00 PM Monday to Friday)

Phone: +61 (8) 8919 0870
Email: shipping@darwinport.com.au

VHF Communications

VHF Channel

Used for

Primary use


Frances Bay Mooring Basin Lockmaster

Communications with vessels entering or leaving Frances Bay Mooring Basin


Tipperary Waters Lockmaster

Communications with vessels entering or leaving Tipperary Waters marina


Darwin LNG

Wickham Point operations


All vessels

Darwin Harbour Control working channel and primary port operations


Cullen Bay Lockmaster

Communication with vessels entering and leaving Cullen Bay marine

12 and 13


Ship manoeuvring with the assistance of tugs

14 and 69

Naval vessels

Navy port working frequency


All vessels

[International] distress, safety and calling


Hudson Creek

Ship-to-shore channel for vessels working in Hudson Creek


All vessels

Darwin Harbour Control weather and notices to mariners information channel (0703 & 1903)


Bayview Marina Lockmaster

Communications with vessels entering or leaving Bayview marina


All vessels

Ship to Ship, Customs and Quarantine



Yacht racing and Regattas


Darwin Marine Supply Base

Darwin Marine Supply Base operations



Bladin Point operations