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Public-images-osm logo.svg lock
Marks a stretch of waterway bounded by lock gates, forming a lock
Group: Waterway
Used on these elements
should not be used on nodes
may be used on ways
should not be used on areas
should not be used on relations
Status: Approved Page for proposal


From International Hydrographic Organization, IHO Dictionary, S-32, 5th Edition:

"A wet dock in a waterway, permitting a ship to pass from one level to another."
Lock gate
"Pair of massive hinged doors at each end of a lock."


Mf way.png lock=yes is used on a way representing a section of waterway which is enclosed by lock gates (tagged with waterway=lock_gate). If the way enclosed by lock gates is a line, then it should also be tagged waterway=river or waterway=canal, with the way direction going from the higher to the lower end of the lock (in the direction of water flow), as is usual with these waterways.

Because the waterway name will be using the "name" property of this way, the tag lock_name=* should be used if the lock has a name.

There is currently no consensus on how renderers respond to the various methods of lock tagging.


  • lock=yes
  • lock_name=*; e.g., lock_name=Withrington Bottom Lock
  • lock_ref=*; e.g., for if a lock has both a name and a reference.
  • lock:height=*; e.g., the distance from low level and hight level
  • automated=*; e.g., 'yes' if the lock is automated

See also