Seacurus Daily Top Ten Maritime News Stories 04/11/2014

Seacurus Daily Top Ten Maritime News Stories 04/11/2014
1. Master Blamed for High Speed Collision
The master of a wind farm passenger transfer vessel has been fined and ordered to pay costs worth nearly £10,000 after a high-speed collision off the UK which experts say could have caused “multiple fatalities”. Michael Gallagher was in charge when the workboat catamaran "Windcat 9", with 15 people on board, hit a large floating military target, the vessel was estimated by officials to be travelling at around 23 knots. Its hull was badly damaged, causing flooding.
2. Security Force Sells Out
Security group Drum Cussac is to sell its business which protects ships from Somali pirates operating in the Indian Ocean to rival Ambrey Risk. Andrew Littlejohns, chief executive of Drum, said the deal – for an undisclosed amount – would allow his business to focus on longer-term maritime contracts and developing its core risk consultancy and mitigation operations. Drum’s maritime transits arm deploys armed guards to vessels sailing through high-risk areas.

3. Safety Cutbacks Even Hit Missing Place Hunt
Cutbacks to Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) have made the search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 all the more challenging, the Bureau reported. In the 2013-14 annual report, ATSB CEO Martin Dolan said the 12% staff reduction came in March before the aircraft went missing, and was particularly difficult. "It was made in the knowledge that there is no contingent workforce in the marketplace of highly skilled transport safety investigators".
4. Shipping Executive Jailed for Fraud
Kwok Han Ying, a former crewing executive for Vermont UM Shipping, has been sentenced to 32 months in jail for multiple offences including criminal breach of trust, forgery and cheating. Kwok misappropriated more than S$230,000 using a variety of methods from 2012 to 2013. Her schemes included telling her then employer that staff had clocked shifts they had not done, and taking out loans in employees’ names.
5. Rapid Phase Out of Tankers
The tanker fleet has phased out quite rapidly, according to the latest Clarksons’ review on demolition of ships. Different trends have been recorded over the recent period that saw various types of ships retired and scrapped at different ages, with some ship reaching up to 30 years of service. However, based on the review, by 30 years old the ship repair costs exceed the profit made from the ship enticing owners to demolish their old units.
6. Keeping Climate Change at Bay
World Governments can keep climate change in check at manageable costs but will have to cut greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2100 to limit fast-worsening risks, a U.N. report has showed. “There is still time, but very little time” to act at manageable costs, Rajendra Pachauri, chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has said. To limit temperature rises, world emissions would have to fall to “near zero or below in 2100.” 
7. Identity Fraud for Ships
People aren’t the only ones affected by identity theft. Tankers, cargo freighters and other ships sailing in the Central Pacific and off the coast of West Africa are increasingly pretending to be vessels that they’re not, according to a new startup. In July, almost 700 ships worldwide engaged in identity fraud, which has grown 30 percent in the past two years, according to new research from Windward, which monitors the worldwide system for tracking merchant vessels.
8. Halloween Shock for Passengers
The Bahamas Celebration cruise ship gave passengers a bit more than the expected spookiness of cruising over Halloween.  Reports indicate that the ship struck an object late on Halloween evening while en route from Freeport Harbor, Bahamas to Palm Beach, Florida. The ship ran aground approximately 200 yards outside the port around 9pm. No details were forthcoming as to the the damage or the cost of repairs.
9. Cold Response to Northern Routes
The much vaunted Northern Sea Route (NSR) offers “limited opportunities” to shipping according to a study by US think tank The Arctic Institute. An analysis of the 2013 shipping season on the Northern Sea Route concluded that even with the expected growth in shipping of hydrocarbon resources from the Arctic, mainly Russia, would not be enough to establish the NSR as a “true trade route”. The 2013 season saw 71 transits, of which only 41 were full transits.
10. Losses Continue to Ramp Up for Owner
Singapore-listed, international dry bulk shipping company, Mercator Lines’ losses rose 11% year on year to $13.4M in the first half ended 30 September, due to falling rates in the second quarter ended 30 September. Its revenues dropped 12% y/y to $30.9M during the same period, a statement of the company said. Lower than expected cargo demand in China and oversupply of tonnage are primarily responsible for lower freight rates, it said.

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


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