Digital sailing? Save time!

Innovation in inland navigation

What is eRIBa?

eRIBa (electronic Reporting for Inland Barges, previously known as the Single Window for Inland Navigation) is a smart communication platform for the exchange of digital reporting information between the inland shipping operator and the waterway authorities in Flanders and on the Western Scheldt. eRIBa makes the reporting process more efficient for you, as an inland shipping operator. eRIBa also allows you to submit a single digital report at the start of your navigation route, provided there are no changes along the way.

For instance, if you plan to sail from Ostend to Antwerp, eRIBa allows you to report your information digitally when you leave Ostend. You no longer have to provide information when you enter the navigation area of De Vlaamse Waterweg nv or the port of Antwerp, unless any changes occur along the way. The reported information is forwarded automatically by eRIBa to all waterway authorities on your shipping route, on the condition that you report at least two waypoints through your reporting software. This information is exchanged fully in accordance with legislation and privacy rules.

As from 4 January 2021, the reporting process for inland navigation has been simplified to one digital report. From that date onwards, your information will be shared through eRIBa.

Enter information correctly

The information is received by eRIBa from your reporting software; eRIBa then immediately forwards this to the relevant waterway authorities. It is important that you enter your information correctly and that you always enter at least two waypoints. Only then can eRIBa determine which waterway authorities are on your shipping route and forward your reporting information to them. After that, you only need to identify yourself and confirm your details with the authorities on your navigation route.

Cooperation between different parties

De Vlaamse Waterweg nv, Port of Antwerp-bruges, North Sea Port, Port of Ostend, Agency for Maritime and Coastal Services and the Joint Nautical Management use eRIBa and were responsible for developing it.  There is also close cooperation with Rijkswaterstaat.

Advantages of digital reporting

Less paperwork, reduced waiting times, improved safety

As from 4 January 2021, you no longer have to report your route, cargo and vessel details through VHF or to the counter. From that date onwards, you only have to submit a single digital report containing this information (using reporting software). This ensures more efficient handling of your paperwork and prompt and correct invoicing.

Digital reporting also improves the quality of the information. Fewer errors are made than when reporting through the counter or VHF. As a result, waterway authorities, lock and bridge operators are better informed about which vessels will pass through and when, and they can minimise any risks in advance. For example, this means that the simultaneous lock passage of two vessels with incompatible goods can be avoided.

In line with Europe

As from 4 January 2021, eRIBa allows you to report digitally more easily on all waterways in Flanders and on the Western Scheldt (including the Dutch side of the North Sea Port). Within the foreseeable future, eRIBa will also mean you no longer have to report twice when crossing a border with the Netherlands (in both directions).

With the eRIBa platform, Flanders is among the forerunners in Europe in the field of digital reporting. We monitor developments elsewhere in Europe and adjust the innovations in Flanders accordingly. As from 4 January 2021, eRIBa allows you to report digitally more easily on all waterways in Flanders and on the Western Scheldt (including the Dutch side of the North Sea Port). Within the foreseeable future, eRIBa will also mean you no longer have to report twice when crossing a border with the Netherlands (in both directions).

Useful tip

Flanders has an extensive waterway network. This means that vessels can sail from A to B using a variety of routes. In order to calculate the navigation fees correctly and notify the locks along the route, it is important that the navigation authorities are informed of the correct navigation route.

In addition to a point of departure and destination, it is advisable to include one or more waypoints or via points. This allows the navigation licence to be produced easily and correctly, reducing the need for amendments.

For example, you could give one of the locks along the route as a waypoint, or if your journey starts or ends outside Flanders, it is useful to state via which “border point” the vessel will enter Flanders.

You can easily find these points in the BICS app, by searching for “border point + the country”, e.g. “border point the Netherlands”.

Along with the correct point of departure and destination, this will enable the software to calculate the correct route. For a point of departure or destination on the De Vlaamse Waterweg network, it is useful to state the berth where the journey starts or ends.

News

Software suppliers

Do you already report digitally? If so, you do not have to bring new reporting software on board. That is because, from behind the scenes, eRIBa works in the background of existing reporting software and is therefore invisible to the user.

The following software suppliers are taking steps to become compatible with eRIBa:

Software name
Publisher
Details
Binnenvaart Informatie en Communicatie Systeem (BICS)
Rijkswaterstaat
ContainerPlanner
Autena Software BV

Desiré Savelkoul

ST. Teunismolenweg 48F, 6534 AG Nijmegen, Netherlands

Office: +31 24 355 94 17

Support: +31 24 355 63 10

d.savelkoul@autena.nl

autena.nl

Navigis
Tresco

Ken Hendrickx

ken@tresco.eu

TRESCO Engineering bv

Vosseschijnstraat 43b1, Haven 140 – 2030 Antwerpen, België

+32 (0)3 2310731

tresco.eu

Periskal Inland ECDIS Viewer
Periskal
RiverGuide
Teqplay

Léon Gommans
Van Nelleweg 1, 3044BC Rotterdam, The Netherlands

+31 (0)6 55306660
leon@teqplay.com
www.riverguide.eu

UAB-Online
UAB-Online

UAB-Online

Montanusstraat 18, 3223 HL, Hellevoetsluis, Netherlands

+31 85 76 09 998

info@uab-online.com

Vemasys
Blue Century

Maarten Breuls

Blue Century – VEMASYS®

Houtdok Noordkaai 142030 Antwerpen

Office: +32 3 376 09 51

maarten@bluecentury.eu

Info: www.bluecentury.be

Login: https://app.vemasys.eu/login

Don’t you report digitally as yet? We recommend bringing new reporting software on board enabling you to switch to digital reporting. This will make the reporting process more efficient for you.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the advantages of reporting digitally?

Digital reporting ensures safer and faster inland navigation.

This simplifies the reporting process: you only have to submit a single report containing your route, cargo and vessel details before you depart, using reporting software. This means that you will no longer have to report by telephone, VHF or to a counter. All waterway authorities along your route will immediately receive the report. This ensures more efficient handling of your paperwork and prompt and correct invoicing.
Digital reporting also improves the quality of the information. Fewer errors are made than when reporting through a counter or VHF. As a result, waterway authorities, lock and bridge operators are better informed about which vessels will pass through and when, and they can minimise any risks in advance. For example, this means that the simultaneous lock passage of two vessels with incompatible goods can be avoided.

The more skippers that report digitally, the greater the advantages for everyone. The advantages will therefore increase over time. For example, initially in some places you will still have to report your information through VHF. In the longer term, this will no longer be necessary and other advantages will become apparent. For example, this will reduce the waiting times at bridges and locks.

Who do I contact if I have problems with my reporting software?

You can contact the supplier of your reporting software.

Will digital reporting incur costs?

If you already report digitally, you can continue to use the same software. This will be made compatible with eRIBa, the underlying smart communication platform that sends the reported information to the correct navigation authorities. If you don’t yet report digitally, we recommend that you switch to digital reporting. This will simplify the reporting process. This may involve the cost of a software package, but most software suppliers offer their software free of charge. You will find a list of software suppliers on this website. It is anticipated that digital reporting will become mandatory in Flanders in the course of 2022.

I have reported digitally, how do I know that this has been received by eRIBa?

Currently, you are unable to see through your reporting software whether eRIBa has received your report. Automatic confirmation through the reporting software will be developed in the course of 2022.

How do I know if eRIBa will send my report to the authorities along my route?

In addition to your point of departure and destination, enter at least one relevant waypoint in Flanders which will allow eRIBa to calculate the correct route. Of course, every waterway authority will retain its individuality. This means that you will receive different types of confirmation. If you are sailing through the area of, for example, De Vlaamse Waterweg nv, your navigation licence will arrive in your inbox automatically. If you are sailing through a port, the port’s system will immediately pick up the information you have reported.

I reported digitally, but do I still have to report twice?

When reporting, it is important that you enter your information correctly using your reporting software and that you always enter at least two waypoints. Only then can eRIBa determine which route you will follow and therefore which waterway authorities are on your shipping route and require your reporting information. After that, with the majority of waterway authorities, you only need to identify yourself and confirm your details.

Don’t I still have to report through marine telephone?

The more skippers that report digitally, the greater the advantages for everyone. The advantages will therefore increase over time. For example, you will still be able to report or confirm your information to some waterway authorities through VHF or by telephone. In the longer term (with more skippers reporting digitally) this will no longer be necessary and other advantages will become apparent. For example, we can use the VHF channel as much as possible for simple, short messages, such as requests for lockage or bridge operation, and (for example) the waiting times for bridges and locks will be shorter.

I am unable to report digitally, what do I do?

If you are within a harbour region, ring the harbour master. If you are within the navigation area of De Vlaamse Waterweg nv, contact De Vlaamse Waterweg nv.

I already report digitally. Do I have to buy new software?

You do not have to buy new reporting software. The existing software will be made compatible with eRIBa, the underlying smart communication platform that sends the reported information to the correct navigation authorities. Through the eRIBa label you can identify whether the reporting software is compatible. These software packages are compatible: BICS ContainerPlanner, Navigis, Periskal Inland ECDIS Viewer and RiverGuide (app).

I already report digitally, what will change for me?

If you already report digitally, in principle little will change. You can continue to use the same reporting software. It is important that you enter your information correctly and that you always enter at least two waypoints. Only then can the smart underlying communication platform eRIBa determine which waterway authorities are on your shipping route and will send your reporting information to them. With a few exceptions, you only have to identify yourself and confirm your details with the authorities on your navigation route.

Which software will be made compatible with eRIBa?

These software packages are compatible: BICS, ContainerPlanner, Navigis, Periskal Inland ECDIS Viewer and RiverGuide (app).

Who will have access to the information that I report digitally?

Only the waterway authorities that are on your navigation route will have access to the information that you report. For instance, if you are sailing from Zeebrugge to Antwerp, the Port of Zeebrugge, De Vlaamse Waterweg nv and the Port of Antwerp will receive the information.

Who will be given access to the information shared with eRIBa?

Only the waterway authorities that are on your navigation route will be given access to the information that you report. For instance, if you sail from Zeebrugge to Antwerp, the Port of Zeebrugge, De Vlaamse Waterweg nv and the Port of Antwerp will receive the information.

What information is collected?

This is information about the vessel, the route taken and the cargo.

My question isn’t on the list?

If your question isn’t on this list, you can send an email to info@eriba-platform.be.

I am a software supplier and require more information. Who can I contact?

You can email your question to info@eriba-platform.be

What are the advantages of reporting digitally?

Digital reporting ensures safer and faster inland navigation.

This simplifies the reporting process: you only have to submit a single report containing your route, cargo and vessel details before you depart, using reporting software. This means that you will no longer have to report by telephone, VHF or to a counter. All waterway authorities along your route will immediately receive the report. This ensures more efficient handling of your paperwork and prompt and correct invoicing.
Digital reporting also improves the quality of the information. Fewer errors are made than when reporting through a counter or VHF. As a result, waterway authorities, lock and bridge operators are better informed about which vessels will pass through and when, and they can minimise any risks in advance. For example, this means that the simultaneous lock passage of two vessels with incompatible goods can be avoided.

The more skippers that report digitally, the greater the advantages for everyone. The advantages will therefore increase over time. For example, initially in some places you will still have to report your information through VHF. In the longer term, this will no longer be necessary and other advantages will become apparent. For example, this will reduce the waiting times at bridges and locks.

Who do I contact if I have problems with my reporting software?

You can contact the supplier of your reporting software.

Who has to report digitally and where do you have to do this?

Digital reporting is available for all inland shipping operators and skippers. This applies in the navigation areas in Flanders and on the Western Scheldt. It will therefore be used by De Vlaamse Waterweg nv, Port of Antwerp, Port of Zeebrugge, North Sea Port, Port of Ostend, the Agency for Maritime and Coastal Services and the Joint Nautical Management. Within the foreseeable future, eRIBa will immediately send your BICS report to all authorities on your route when you leave the Netherlands for Flanders and vice versa.

Do I have to buy new software?

If you don’t yet report digitally and therefore don’t have reporting software on board, we recommend that you purchase this. This will simplify the reporting process. This may involve the cost of a software package, but most software suppliers offer their software free of charge. It is anticipated that digital reporting will become mandatory in Flanders in the course of 2022.

I don’t yet report my information digitally. What do I have to do?

If you don’t yet report digitally, we recommend that you purchase software. This will simplify the reporting process. This may involve the cost of a software package. The BICS application, provided by the Rijkswaterstaat is free of charge. It is anticipated that digital reporting will become mandatory in Flanders in the course of 2022.

Which software will be made compatible with eRIBa?

These software packages are compatible: BICS, ContainerPlanner, Navigis, Periskal Inland ECDIS Viewer and RiverGuide (app).

How do I report digitally?

To report digitally, you require a computer with internet connection and reporting software. Most software suppliers offer their software free of charge. You will find a list of software suppliers on this website.

Who will have access to the information that I report digitally?

Only the waterway authorities that are on your navigation route will have access to the information that you report. For instance, if you are sailing from Zeebrugge to Antwerp, the Port of Zeebrugge, De Vlaamse Waterweg nv and the Port of Antwerp will receive the information.

Who will be given access to the information shared with eRIBa?

Only the waterway authorities that are on your navigation route will be given access to the information that you report. For instance, if you sail from Zeebrugge to Antwerp, the Port of Zeebrugge, De Vlaamse Waterweg nv and the Port of Antwerp will receive the information.

What information is collected?

This is information about the vessel, the route taken and the cargo.

My question isn’t on the list?

If your question isn’t on this list, you can send an email to info@eriba-platform.be.

I am a software supplier and require more information. Who can I contact?

You can email your question to info@eriba-platform.be