Mariner Quick Facts

(Note that the following information should be confirmed from relevant publications and charts. The Windsor Port Authority takes no responsibility for the accuracy of the information.)


There is one unsheltered anchorage in the Port (a second is available in the Port of Detroit) just north of Fighting Island 1,219m (3999.3ft) in length and 244m (800.5ft) in width with depths of 9.4m to 11.0m (30.8ft to 36.1ft). Contact VTS Sarnia. No vessel shall anchor in the Port except in the anchorage area or other such place as authorized by the Harbour Master, a member of the United States Coast Guard or an officer-in-charge of a patrol vessel.

Cargo Rates and Harbour Dues

Full tariff schedules are available by following the link: Harbour Fees and Cargo Rates / Wharfage Rates.


NOAA 14848

Harbour Master

Contact at Windsor Port Authority, 3190 Sandwich Street, Windsor, Ontario N9C 1A6, 519-258-5741 Extension 211 E-Mail or Ch 14 VHF.


St Lawrence and Lake Ontario traffic is restricted by closure of the Welland Canal about December 26 to March 28. Lake freighter traffic above the Welland Canal continues for at least 11 months a year with occasional closure in March depending on the weather.

Inward and Outward Reports
The owner of a vessel that lands a cargo in the Port or leaves the Port after a cargo has been shipped or transhipped to another vessel in the Port will deliver to the Windsor Port Authority a correct inward and outward report.
Maximum Size

Maximum LOA 306.2m (1004ft), maximum beam 32m (105ft), maximum draft 9m (29.5ft). These do not necessarily apply to all berths within the Port.


The river is spanned by the high-level Ambassador Bridge connecting Windsor with Detroit. It has a vertical clearance of 40.6m to 47.6m (133ft-156ft), the latter for a length of 30m (98.4ft) in midstream. An overhead power line comprising of five cables with a minimum clearance of 55.8m (183ft) spans the river 2.73km (1.7 miles) below the Ambassador Bridge. The cables are supported on each shore.


Pilotage is compulsory upon the Great Lakes for all vessels of foreign registry and any other vessel that does not qualify for exemption as prescribed in Section 4 of the Great Lakes Pilotage Regulations.


The Windsor Port Authority monitors VHF radio on Ch. 16 during working hours and can be contacted through Sterling Marine Fuels on Ch. 14 during non-working hours.


(42 deg 19’N-83 deg 03’W) The Port of Windsor extends about 21.2 km (13.2 miles) along the Canadian shore of the Detroit River between Lake Erie and Lake St. Clair opposite Detroit, Michigan, 992.7 Km (617 miles) from Montreal. The approximate southern limit is a straight line from Fighting Island North light on a 046.5 deg direction to the shore. The western limit of the Port is the international boundary to a northerly extension of the east limit of the City of Windsor at Lake St. Clair.


No vessel 19.8m (65ft) or more in length shall navigate in the Harbour at a speed exceeding 8 knots.


Oil bunkers are available through Sterling Fuels Limited or contact the Harbour Master re provisions and water on Ch 14.


There are no tides. The current in the Detroit River attains a rate of 4-4.5 knots.

Traffic Schemes

At the time of departure, at mandatory calling in points as listed under the St. Clair and Detroit River navigation safety regulations and the US Inland Waterways Navigation Regulations mariners operating commercial vessels 6.1m (20ft) of more in length are reponsible for identifying themselves and informing the regulator of their plans (OIC, VTS, Canadian Coast Guard Sarnia, tel: 1 519 337 6572 VHF Ch12).


Tugs are seldom required for berthing. Two tugs operated by McKeil Marine Ltd. and Dean Construction may be available after 1630 and on weekends. If no arrangements with Canadian tugs are possible, arrangements may be made through Great Lakes Towing after Customs clearance at (519) 257-6457.