Coast Guard port conditions

The US Coast Guard uses a system of port conditions ranging from Whiskey to Zulu telling ship operators how to respond to coming tropical weather.

Port conditions are set by a Coast Guard captain of the port and apply to the official’s entire area of responsibility. The condition statuses are as follows:

Whiskey: Set when gale force winds are expected to arrive at the port within 72 hours. Port remains open to all commercial traffic, but oceangoing ships and barges must report their intention to remain in port or depart. If they are departing, they must do so within 12 hours of gale-force winds.

X-Ray: Gale force winds are expected within 48 hours. The rules are similar to port condition Whiskey.

Yankee: Gale force winds predicted within 24 hours. Vessels seeking to depart must arrange immediate departure. Cargo operations must cease with 18 kilometre per hour (kph) winds. Transfer hoses must be disconnected with 22 kph winds. Ships seeking to arrive in port should seek an alternate destination.

Zulu: Gale force winds within 12 hours. The port is closed.