Seacurus Bulletin 14/07/2014
MARITIME LABOUR CONVENTION AND SEAFARER NEWS
The Dutch captain of the general cargo vessel "Simon B" was arrested last week for drunken sailing in Aalborg, Denmark. Suspicions were aroused when he sailed past his designated berth and eventually collided with the dock. The police were called and found the man to be visibly intoxicated. Tests revealed he had a blood alcohol level 2.07, over ten times the allowable limit. The captain has been detained by authorities.
The Mission to Seafarers’ (MtS) Sea Sunday campaign 2014 kicked off this week on 13 July in hundreds of church congregations around the world, highlighting the tragic plight of abandoned seafarers suffering in maritime ports. MtS has made a short video about the problem of abandonment which can be viewed on You Tube http://youtu.be/CA_w5vVSVx4 In other ports, such as in South America, Africa and East Asia, conditions on board can be even more desperate, with temperatures soaring to over 40C and inhuman conditions made worse by the risk of vermin and insect infestation.
Two crewmen have suffered smoke inhalation from a fire on a bulk carrier berthed in Western Australia’s Pilbara region. A spokesman for the Port Hedland Seafarers Centre said the blaze started on the MV Marigold, moored at Finucane Island, yesterday afternoon. Two men were treated for smoke inhalation and one of them might need to be flown to Perth today for further treatment, he said, One was from Korea and the other from Myanmar. It’s understood investigators from the Australian Transport Safety Bureau are on their way to the ship.
Throughout the history of mankind, the sea was the place where routes of explorers and adventurers intersected. Above all, it is a privileged place for exchange of goods and global trade. Nearly 100,000 ships, are sailing run by a workforce of approximately 1.2 million seafarers of all races, nationalities and religions. During this Sea Sunday there was a chance to remember the hardships and difficulties that seafarers face every day. The life of seafarers is difficult and dangerous, we should not forget the risk of piracy, and also the danger of criminalization and abandonment without wages, food and protection in foreign ports.
‘Pieter Schelte’, the biggest vessel in the world, is to be completed in the port of Rotterdam. Owner and designer Allseas and the Port of Rotterdam Authority have signed an agreement to this effect. The plan is for ‘Pieter Schelte’ to arrive in Rotterdam at the end of 2014. ‘Pieter Schelte’ is 382 metres long and 124 metres wide. The length, in combination with the massive width, makes this vessel unique.The vessel is equipped for laying large pipelines and, with her capacity, will be the largest pipelay vessel as well. The vessel can lift topsides of offshore platforms weighing up to 48,000 tonnes and jackets up to 25,000 tonnes.
The refloating of the wreck of the Costa Concordia is due to get under way on Monday (14 July) subject to weather conditions and the final go-ahead from the Italian authorities. Costa Crocieri and its salvage partners, Titan Salvage and Micoperi, said that final confirmation would only be given the day before the operation was due to start. Before then, they said, it would need to be authorised by the observatory set up by the Italian authorities to monitor the environmental and safety aspects of the operation, which would also be subject to final weather checks. The journey to Genoa is expected to take four days, demolition will last 22 months. http://goo.gl/v26MCs
A philanthropist couple has spent millions of euros to buy a ship which they plan to use to rescue migrants from rickety boats in the centre of the Mediterranean. Malta-based Christopher and Regina Catrambone felt compelled to act after several hundred African migrants drowned off the Italian island of Lampedusa in October They have set up the Migrant Offshore Aid Station and bought and equipped a 43-metre ship, the Phoenix1, which will set sail for the central routes navigated by migrants, manned by a professional crew that includes paramedics. The vessel, will search for migrants’ boats, pick up the migrants and then rescue them.
PIRACY AND MARITIME SECURITY NEWS
Eleven sailors of different nationalities have reportedly been taken hostage by the Somali militant group Al-Shabaab after their Kenyan-owned ship was stranded at remote village on the Somali coast, according a maritime official and a local Somali clan elder. "We had received a distress call from the ship on Thursday," Andrew Mwangura, the Secretary-General of the Seafarers Union of Kenya and a known negotiator between pirates and ship owners, told Anadolu Agency on Friday. He said the ship, Kenyan-owned MV Jamila, had developed mechanical problems and was forced to dock at Meyraley village, which is about 100kms from Mogadishu.
With the arrival of southwest monsoon, more small craft are operating in the Gulf of Aden, bringing additional complexity in identifying potential threats, according to Dryad Maritime, a leading maritime operations organisation. But it has also said that this time of the year makes it difficult for pirates to operate small boats.
“The southwest monsoon, however, will continue to limit the pirates’ use of small boats in the Arabian Sea and the Sea of Oman over the next three months,” said Mike Edey, head of operations, Dryad Maritime.
The hijacking of the tanker "Moresby 9" and the stealing of its cargo, last week was the third such incident to hit its owner this year, according ReCAAP Information Sharing Centre. The Honduras-flagged Moresby 9 was boarded by nine pirates armed with machetes and pistols in Indonesian waters near the Anambas Islands in the South China Sea. The crew were tied up and locked in the engine control room, apart from the chief officer who was forced to navigate the vessel. It is the third incident of its type involving the same owner, other vessels "Naniwa Maru No. 1" and "Ai Maru" were boarded in April and June respectively.
South Africa’s National Defence Force Intelligence Division offered what has been described as a “blunt” assessment of the security risks facing Africa to visiting Chinese Defence Minister Chang Wanquan. Some of what it said is to be expected: The Boko Haram threat and Al Shabaab, while the international arms embargo on Somalia is likely to be partially lifted. The South Africans also talk about piracy, they note that there has been a rise in piracy in West Africa’s Gulf of Guinea, while the report claims that, levels of violence are higher as West African pirates are less concerned with maintaining the well-being of hostages.
The Commander of Nigerian Navy SHip "NNS Delta", has handed over a vessel "MT Gare" and its suspected pirate crew to Interpol. The Navy explained that the suspects allegedly used MT Gare to hijack another vessel, MT Kerala, off the coast of Angola on January18. He said they used the hijacked MT Kerala vessel to siphon over 75,000 metric tons of Automated Gasoline Oil, AGO, off the coast of Angola. The commander said that the cargo was hijacked 200 nautical miles off the Angola coast with over $10 million worth of product on board.
The Republic of Korea Ship (ROKS) "Munmu the Great" has quickly settled down to business in the Gulf of Aden leading Combined Task Force 151 (CTF-151). Since June 2014 command of CTF-151 has been aboard the Republic of Korea Flag Ship under the leadership Rear Admiral Cho Young Joo. The task force is undertaking operations in the Gulf of Aden to disrupt piracy while engaging with regional and international partners. Rear Admiral Young Joo has considerable knowledge of the region having successfully commanded ROKS Choi Young in the region in 2011. The Republic of Korea Navy will retain command of CTF-151 until August 2014.
Sri Lanka’s capacity to manage maritime security risks and conduct search and rescue will be enhanced with the commissioning of two Bay Class patrol boats gifted by Australia, Australian Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, Scott Morrison said. Speaking at the commissioning ceremony of the ex-Australian Customs and Border Protection Vessels (ACVs) Corio Bay and Hervey Bay, now known as Sri Lankan Navy Ships Mihikatha and Rathnadeepa, Minister Morrison said that the Australian Government was proud the vessels’ operation would serve to enhance Sri Lanka’s maritime security capacity, complementing their current fleet.
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