Risk Assessment Methodology for Vessel Traffic in Ports by Defining the Nautical Port Risk Index

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10 Citations (Scopus)
53 Downloads (Pure)


Ports represent a key element in the maritime transportation chain. Larger vessels and higher traffic volumes in ports might result in higher risks at the navigational level. Thus, the dire need for a comprehensive and efficient risk assessment method for ports is felt. Many methodologies have been proposed so far, but their application to aggregated vessel traffic risks for the overall assessment of ports is not developed yet. Hence, the development of an approach for the appraisal of the vessel traffic risks is still a challenging issue. This research aims to develop an assessment methodology to appraise the potential risk of accident occurrence in port areas at an aggregated level by creating a ‘Nautical Port Risk Index’ (NPRI). After identifying the main nautical risks in ports, the Analytic Network Process (ANP) is used to derive the risk perception (RP) weights for each criterion from data collected through surveys to expert navigators. The consequences related to each nautical risk are identified in consultation with risk experts. By combining the RP values and the consequence of each criterion for a time period, the NPRI is calculated. The risks in the Port of Rotterdam are presented in a case study, and the method has been validated by checking the results with experts in assessing nautical port risks from the Port of Rotterdam Authority. This method can be used to assess any new port design, the performance of different vessel traffic management measures, changes in the fleet composition, or existent ports using the Automatic Identification System (AIS) data.
Original languageEnglish
Article number10
Pages (from-to)1-27
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of Marine Science and Engineering
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • risk assessment
  • risk analysis
  • vessel traffic
  • port
  • AIS data


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