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The Saimaa Canal to be opened for traffic on Friday 17 May 2019

The Saimaa Canal to be opened for traffic on Friday 17 May 2019

Published 16.05.2019

The refurbishment of all eight locks of the Saimaa Canal has been completed. Traffic in the canal will start on Friday 17 May 2019 at 7 a.m.

”Work on refurbishing the Saimaa Canal locks, which began in 2016, has now been completed right on schedule. We carried out tests on the canal in April-May and are now able to open the whole canal for traffic”, says Tero Sikiö, Head of Unit at the Finnish Transport Infrastructure Agency.

”The original locks were built in the 1960s and they were not able to handle the winter traffic we have today. The new locks are more robust and easier to maintain”, Sikiö says.

With a length of 43 kilometres, the Saimaa Canal is the most important canal in Finland. The canal joins Lake Saimaa with the Gulf of Finland. Nearly half of the canal runs through a land area leased from Russia. The eight locks of the Saimaa Canal are operated via remote control centres at Mälkiä and Brusnitchnoe.

The Saimaa Canal is open to traffic 24 hours a day throughout the boating season. All eight locks have the same dimensions and use the same technology. The biggest allowed ship size is 82.5 x 12.6 x 4.35 metres and safe overhead clearance 24.5 metres.

Canal passage instructions, permit forms, traffic instructions and additional information on piloting are found on the website of the Finnish Transport Infrastructure Agency.

Further information:
Tero Sikiö, Head of Unit, tel. +358 29 534 3409, firstname.lastname@vayla.fi

The Finnish Transport Infrastructure Agency is responsible for developing and maintaining the state-owned road network, the railways and the waterways. Through our tasks, which include maintaining the level of service of transport, we promote wellbeing in society and competitiveness of Finnish industry.


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