Syndicat Mixte des Traversées du Delta du Rhône

The organization of the SMTDR

Organization of the SMTDR

The ferry service depended on the State by being a service of the Departmental Directorate of Equipment,then responsibility for the activity was transferred to the General Council of Bouches-du-Rhône as part of decentralization but it was always the DDE, Arles’ subdivision, which had operational responsibility for the service.
In 1999, with the aim of improving the provision of this service, the Syndicat Mixte des Traversées du Delta du Rhône (SMTDR) was created with the Department of Bouches-du-Rhône, the Provence Alpes Côte d’Azur region (left in 2021) and the commune of Arles.
The SMTDR is a public local cooperation establishment with the legal form of an open mixed union. The Department has delegated its authority to it for the organization and management of crossings of the Rhône Delta at two crossing points.

The board

A board of directors, the Union Council, made up of elected representatives from the communities in proportion to their participations, ensures the management of the SMTDR. The Union Council is chaired by its President (currently the President is Ms. Mandy GRAILLON, departmental advisor).

The management including part of the administrative services is based in Arles (4 people) and 2 are based in Salin de Giraud where an office is also held at the ‘Maison du Passeur de Salin de Giraud’ during the first 3 months of the year, for the validation of boarding subscriptions. At Le Sauvage, the ferryman is available in the office between passages.

It should be noted that the Barcarin ferry was the subject of a song and a comic strip.

Appropriate means

Amphidrome ferries are vessels specifically adapted to the characteristics of the operation which they must ensure with proven reliability. They have been continually improved during their service. They are geared by trained personnel.

An amphidromous vehicle has the particularity of being able to move forwards and backwards in the same way.

Logistical support is provided by a majority of regional companies in compliance with the Public Procurement Code and in constant liaison with manufacturers. (Wärtsilä France, Baudouin, John Deere for engines and generators, Voith France for propulsion systems, ZF for gearboxes…).

This public service fulfills an operational mission of certain quality with the greatest amplitude and the highest frequency in France.

The SMTDR is certified as compliant with the International Code for Maritime Safety Management and Pollution Prevention (ISM Code) It is therefore driven by a desire for improvement.


Bouches-du-Rhône Departmental Council,

City of Arles

Union Council
(elected representatives)

President of the SMTDR

Director of SMTDR

Administrative department


Revenue management

Subscriber management

Territorial Civil Service Personal HR

IM Human Resources

Operating Division



Application of the ISM code (security, etc.)

État du trafic

Bac de Barcarin


Statistical estimation

Bac du Sauvage


Statistical estimation


Pas ou peu d'attente


Sûrement un peu d'attente​

Très chargé

Attente supérieure ou égale à 30 minutes


Trafic à l'arrêt

Ces informations sont représentatives du trafic au moment où elles sont mises à jour. Le SMTDR ne pourra être tenu responsable de l’évolution parfois rapide de l’affluence ou de la météo.

Traffic conditions

Barcarin ferry


Statistical estimation

Sauvage's Ferry


Statistical estimation


Little or no waiting


Probably a bit of a wait


Waiting greater than or equal to 30 minutes


Traffic stopped

This information is representative of traffic at the time it is updated. The SMTDR cannot be held responsible for the sometimes rapid change in attendance or the weather.