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Vessel Traffic Services (VTS) System
The Hong Kong Vessel Traffic Centre The Marine Department started to provide the Vessel Traffic Services (VTS) for the port of Hong Kong in 1989. With twelve shore-based radars and a computerised radar surveillance system, the Vessel Traffic Centre (VTC) virtually visualizes the marine traffic situation in different areas of Hong Kong on electronic display units.

Ships visiting Hong Kong are identified by Vessel Traffic Regulators in the VTC with the aid of a Very High Frequency (VHF) Direction Finding system on their first voice contacts and their names tagged with the corresponding targets on the radar surveillance system.
The radar surveillance system is linked with an information database system to record all movements of vessels in port as well as to support invoicing and compilation of statistics. The movement of vessels are uploaded to the webpage of the department and which is accessible by relevant parties.

With the Vessel Traffic Services (VTS) system, Vessel Traffic Regulators are able to provide traffic information and advice to mariners by VHF communication. Directions will be given to ships which do not comply with international or local regulations or which may endanger other ships. The VTS system was upgraded in 2002 with the latest technologies to cater for the anticipated traffic growth for the next decade. It is designed to automatically track a maximum of 4,000 moving targets and 1,000 stationary targets at any one time.

In addition, there are 12 Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) system cameras installed at various strategic locations, e.g. areas of heavy traffic, to provide real time visual vessel images. The VTS system is also capable of receiving and displaying information of vessels transmitted by their own Automatic Identification System (AIS).