Seacurus Daily Top Ten Maritime News Stories 13/10/2014

Seacurus Daily Top Ten Maritime News Stories 13/10/2014


1. Data Needs to Be Shared and Open

Shipping efficiency data should not be withheld by the IMO but made transparent so the industry can improve environmental performance, campaign groups have said. Transport & Environment, Seas at Risk and Richard Branson’s Carbon War Room argue that a lack of publicly available data on the energy performance of individual ships is one of the principal barriers to the sector reducing its emissions. The groups support initiatives to make efficiency performance publicly available and require ships to report and publicise their energy efficiency data, but warn some in the industry are trying to undermine these moves.




2. Cruise Passengers See UFO

A new UFO sighting has the US looking skyward this week, as Carnival Cruise ship passenger witnessed the passing unidentified flying object and uploaded it to YouTube. The footage may be rather unsteady at first, but that’s only because the video source, Maureen (a female passenger who was aboard the Carnival Cruise at the time of the apparent UFO appearance), said she was “nervous.” Some argue that it may only have been a drone that got a little too close for comfort to the ship.




3. Ebola Charterparty Concerns

Due to the fact that standard charterparties do not contain clauses specifically relating to Ebola-affected ports, fever and epidemic clauses can be drafted. However, where they are absent from a charterparty there are a number of issues that can arise. “ The general rule is that the Master is obliged to follow charterers’ orders – and a charterer is to pay hire continuously through the charter period.  Whilst the Safe Port warranty generally relates to the safety of the vessel and cargo, an unacceptable risk to crew may render the port unsafe.  Nevertheless, the presence locally of Ebola may not render a port unsafe a think tank has explained.



4. Master Speaks of Asian Attack

The Vietnamese diesel tanker crew that was taken by masked pirates off the coast of Singapore believe the men were Indonesians. According to the master, they were aggressive, brandishing guns and swinging knives, "but luckily we all managed to avoid them,” Captain Thang said. The pirates ransacked the cabin and navigational equipment, except for the rudder and compass. They also took all the crew members’ cell phones, tablets, clothes, watches. The Pirates wore masks but their voices, clothes and daily habits suggested that they’re from Indonesia, Thanh said with certainty, citing his many years sailing through South East Asia.




5. Time for Action on Seafarer competency

Now more than ever the maritime industry needs to work together, be smarter and maximize the available resources that support and prepare the current and next generation of mariners. Why? Because the maritime work environment is changing so rapidly and becoming ever more demanding.  Fortunately, there are many excellent and innovative programs around to help meet the needs of today’s workforce. These include e-learning tools, on-the-job training, performance assessment, manned models, and back-to-the-classroom opportunities for shoreside management to sharpen skills and increase competence. To find out more visit:




6. Guard Case in India Rolls On

Those following the detention of anti-piracy vessel "Seaman Guard Ohio" together with her crew after she entered Indian coastal waters a year ago, will no doubt have thought that the case would have been done and dusted by now. In March the crew had been freed with just two senior staff detained to await the judgement of the Court, but the crew have been forced to remain in India. The Mission to Seafarers has now launched a further appeal after the 145,000 strong petition to Downing Street in March seemingly had no effect and statements from the men and their families illustrate how desperate their situation has become.




7. UAE Calls for Collective Effort

The UAE calls for a collective international effort to combat maritime piracy, which poses a threat to the maritime security, particularly in the Indian Ocean.   UAE Minister of Economy Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri headed the UAE delegation to the Indian Ocean Rim Association (Iora)14th Council of Ministers Meeting which concluded in Perth, Australia, on Thursday. The three-day meeting discussed areas of priority to Iora-member countries, including maritime security and safety in the Indian Ocean Region; Al Mansouri noted that as a peace-loving country, the UAE calls for a collective international effort to combat maritime piracy.




8. Mary Maersk in Commando Raid

It was a dramatic evening for "Mary Maersk" last Sunday. Sailing through the Fehmarn Belt dividing Denmark and Germany, 30 soldiers were suddenly lowered from helicopters to board the vessel. Members of the Frogman Corps – an elite commando unit of the Royal Danish Navy – their mission was to defeat the pirates who had taken control of the large container vessel. It was all an exercise, of course, and piracy in the Baltic Sea has been non-existent for centuries. For the Royal Danish Navy, however, the rescue operation was designed to be as realistic as possible in preparing them for anti-piracy missions in the Gulf of Aden.




9. Shipowner Unveils Surcharge for Cleaner Fuel

Orient Overseas Container Line has become the latest shipowner to unveil a per-container surcharge to offset assumed higher fuel costs to comply with stricter emissions regulations in effect from January 2015. Next year, ships traveling within 200 miles of shore in North America and the Baltic and North seas must limit sulfur emissions from fuel to 0.1%, down from 1%, according to International Maritime Organization rules. Shipowners have said their fuel costs will rise and they are passing those higher costs onto their customers. OOCL said it will levy a “low sulfur surcharge” from January 1, 2015, on routes that cross Emission Control Areas.




10. Happy Birthday US Navy

The United States Navy is celebrating its 239th Birthday – a history which traces its origins to the Continental Navy, which the Continental Congress established on 13 October 1775. The first two armed vessels were despatched to cruise in search of munitions ships supplying the British Army in America. The legislation also established a Naval Committee to supervise the work. Throughout the history of conflict the US Navy has a proud tradition, though it is also about more than fighting wars. With a humanitarian and security role tackling piracy, the Navy is set to deliver on its role as a guardian of US interests and those of its allies and friends.




Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions


Best regards,

S Jones
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