Capacity of a body of water to allow the passage of vessels at a given time / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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A body of water, such as a river, canal or lake, is navigable if it is deep, wide and calm enough for a water vessel (e.g. boats) to pass safely. Such a navigable water is called a waterway, and is preferably with few obstructions against direct traverse that needed avoiding, such as rocks, reefs or trees. Bridges built over waterways must have sufficient clearance. High flow speed may make a channel unnavigable due to risk of ship collisions. Waters may be unnavigable because of ice, particularly in winter or high-latitude regions. Navigability also depends on context: a small river may be navigable by smaller craft such as a motorboat or a kayak, but unnavigable by a larger freighter or cruise ship. Shallow rivers may be made navigable by the installation of locks that regulate flow and increase upstream water level, or by dredging that deepens parts of the stream bed.

Navigation markers, entrance of Fremantle harbour and the Swan River, Western Australia