VRCA manages commercial navigation in the port waters of Geelong and Hastings and is responsible for the safe and efficient movement of shipping in port waters, providing direction and control of the movement of ships, and maintaining shipping channels and navigation aids.

VRCA also oversees channel management for the Port of Portland and coordinates the Port Development Strategy for the Port of Geelong.

Established by the Victorian Government under the Port Management Act 1995 and the Transport Integration Act 2010, VRCA’s key responsibilities are:

Shipping control

VRCA is responsible for the safe and efficient movement of shipping in Geelong and Hastings port waters.

Vessel movements are managed through VRCA’s harbour control at each port.

For information about ships entering and leaving Geelong, see our Ship Movements pages – Geelong and Hastings

Provision of Navigation Aids

Maintenance of the navigation aids, which mark the channels of Port Phillip Bay, is critical to the safety of all commercial shipping.

VRCA is responsible for managing and maintaining the navigation aids, beacons and buoys marking the commercial shipping channels and approaches to the Port of Geelong.

VRCA manages the planning and building of new structures when required and supervises the contracts for the upgrading and maintenance of existing structures.

To report on navigation aid faults, please contact VRCA.

Channel Management and Maintenance

VRCA manages the maintenance of shipping channels and approaches to the Port of Geelong and oversees management of Portland and Hastings channels.

Shipping channels and berths need to be maintained at declared depths so that ships can enter the ports and load to their required capacity without risk. As part of this work, the VRCA engages hydrographic survey teams to undertake an annual survey of Geelong port waters.

Dredging is an important aspect of channel management in the Port of Geelong to further improve access, safety and efficiency for ships using Geelong shipping channels while protecting the bay.

Any works are undertaken under the Coastal Management Act 1995, following extensive consultation with the Department of the Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP). The work must meet all requirements for the protection of the marine environment, ensuring that nature and commerce coexist. Dredging and placement activities are managed under the strict controls of an Environmental Management Plan (EMP) approved by DELWP.