Be A Voyeur and Track Ships Live

Add this to your bookmark list of cool places that offer real-time information about stuff happening in the world. It’s called “Marine Traffic” and it’s based on Google Mapping technology – called a “Mashup.” It shows live information about ship movements throughout the world. You can search by ship name or zoom into map to view sailing ships in a particular area.  This includes ferries and cruise ships that are coming and going.  Perhaps you have a friend or relative on a cruise ship and you want to check on where they are.  This gives you the power!

IMG_8946Recently I took a vacation to Seattle and traveled from the main port to Bainbridge Island.  The photo I took (right) was deceptive because it doesn’t show any of the other vessels out on the water… but trust me, there were lots.  It was cool to see all the ships coming and going, but I’ve always wondered who they belong to and where they’re going.  So I did some searching and found this site.

Vessel locations are shown on the map using colored markers with each color representing particular type of vessel (Cruise Boat, Cargo Tankers, High Speed Craft, Yachts & Others). Clicking on a marker displays vessel’s image, speed, course, dimensions, voyage details and more. If you’re curious about a particular port, the site also lets you check real-time ship arrival & departure times.

How Is This Handy for Public Information Officers?

  • Verifies if alternative routes of escape or detours are still available (ie Ferries or Water Taxis)
  • Gives you information about the amount of water traffic is in a particular area
  • Helps you dispel rumors by providing you direct access to official information about ports & ships
  • Lets you track ship positions in real time
  • See ship’s image, speed, course, dimensions, voyage details and more
  • Get info on sea ports, stations and navigation aids

Check out Marine Traffic here – www.marinetraffic.com

There’s another site that’s similar: www.sailwx.info.  Bookmark this too – just in case one isn’t available, you’ve got a backup.

One More Thing

scooters_on_ferryA little off subject, but it was amazing how many cars they can fit on a Washington State Ferry.  I stood there waiting for all the cars to drive off the ship before we could get our little rented scooters on it.  I think the next application to come about will allow us to track scooters and cars live (oops, a little too Big Brother I suppose)!

Click on the image to see a bigger size.

0 comments… add one

Leave a Comment