Top Ten Maritime News Stories 01/06/2015

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 01/06/2015


1. Oily Water Effectiveness Questioned

Preliminary results from a six-month study on the effectiveness of oily water separators indicate seafarers have some serious complaints about an onboard technology that can land them in jail. The discharge of oily water from a ship is a serious criminal offence, yet seafarers find the equipment designed to prevent such discharges challenging. In a few rare cases, they resort to magic pipes to bypass the oily water separator itself or to fraudulent paperwork to bypass the regulations that govern it. A new study is underway to see what can be done to improve shipboard oily waste management.




2. Migrant Corpses Stacking Up

The corpses of 17 migrants were brought ashore in Sicily aboard an Italian naval vessel on Sunday along with 454 survivors as efforts intensified to rescue people fleeing war and poverty in Africa and the Middle East. More than 5,000 migrants trying to reach Europe have been saved from boats in distress in the Mediterranean since Friday and operations are in progress to rescue 500 more, European Union authorities said on Sunday. In some of the most intense Mediterranean traffic of the year, migrants who left Libya in 25 boats were picked up by ships from Italy, Britain, Malta and Belgium, border control agency Frontex said




3. Sharp Pirate Attack Increase

Pirate attacks targeting commercial shipping, including oil cargo, have sharply increased, Managing Director of National Iranian Tanker Company (NITC) Ali Akbar Shafa’ie has said. “Between 2007 and 2008 when maritime piracy began in the Gulf of Aden, our NITC fleet came under more than 70 attacks but they escalated very much in 2014 and the beginning of 2015,” he told the Labor News Agency ILNA. However, none of the attacks on the Iranian cargo was successful, Shafa’ie said – “Thanks to the potency of military and security forces on board and measures taken in line with IMO requirements and navigational readiness".



4. All Ready for Norshipping

This week, the shipping industry congregates in Oslo for the biennial Nor-Shipping event, or more precisely events, which is celebrating 25 shows over 50 years. As Nor-Shipping looks at the future, it has itself evolved, particularly in the last four years. A two or three day exhibition of technology and services has evolved into a week-long display of what is happening in the industry, it has gone from pumps to policy. This year sees the introduction of the Ocean Industry Podium sessions. These are one-hour debates, with moderators, speakers, direct case studies on the session themes and panellists offering  feedback and comment.




5. Record Year for Danish Fleet

The merchant fleet under the Danish flag and the Danish shipping companies’ foreign exchange earnings have set a record, despite a historically tough market, Danish Shipowners’ Association said in its press release. Despite the global maritime market having been subject to great pressure in recent years, the Danish shipping companies have nevertheless succeeded in strengthening the merchant fleet under the Danish flag, thus as of April 2015 it is bigger than ever. In January 2014 the gross tonnage was 12.3 million GT, whilst in April 2015 it was 14.6 million tonnes GT – or 16.6 million dead weight tonnes (DWT).




6. Safety Report into Container Death

The UK MAIB has issued its Safety Digest including lessons learnt from maritime accidents. One case refers to a fatal accident during container removal. Containers were being discharged from inside the main vehicle deck of a ro-ro cargo ship. A crewman and a fork-lift truck driver were working together to move the containers from their storage positions onto trailers for transfer ashore. The crewman’s job was twofold: to remove the twistlocks from the underside of containers before they were loaded onto trailers and also to remove twistlocks left behind on the deck to prevent them obstructing vehicles’ tyres.




7. Greeks Urged on Environmental Action

Several key environmental NGOs working on sustainable shipping have met with Greek and European policy makers to discuss concerns related to the shipping industry’s high emissions, marine pollution and poor shipbreaking practices, saying that Greece as one of the largest shipping nations has a particular responsibility to mitigate pollution caused by ships. The day before the official opening of the European Maritime Days in Athens, both Greek Environment Minister Yannis Tsironis and Director of the Greek Ministry of Shipping Agisilagos Anastasakos exchanged views on possible solutions for sustainable shipping with an NGO coalition.



8. Sea Shepherd Sues Whalers

US-based marine conservation organization Sea Shepherd Conservation Society has filed claims against Japan’s Institute for Cetacean Research (ICR) in the US District Court for the Western District of Washington, seeking a declaration that ICR’s whaling in the Southern Ocean near Antarctica is illegal under international law.

Sea Shepherd claims that ICR is guilty of piracy for illegally killing and taking whales from the sea for commercial profit, and for engaging in violent actions against Sea Shepherd volunteers – including ramming vessels, hurling stun grenades and grappling hooks, employing bamboo poles as spears, and firing water cannons.




9. Cruise Ship Embraces LNG

A cruise ship received environmentally friendly power from an LNG hybrid barge for the first time when Becker Marine Systems’ barge, Hummel, provided 7.5 megawatts of low-emission power to AIDAsol during its layover at port in Hamburg on May 30. “With this successful premiere, the Port of Hamburg is serving as a global role model,” said Henning Kuhlmann, a managing director of Becker Marine Systems. “Credit is also due to our partner AIDA Cruises, who were deeply involved in this technically challenging project.” Up until now, only a few other ships have been able to receive power from such a barge.




10. Supply Vessel Fire in Bombay High

The ONGC supply vessel Vestfonn suffered an engine room fire on Sunday, in the Mumbai High field, about 200km west of Mumbai, India. The OSV Ahalya evacuated 24 of the 33 crew from Vestfonn, leaving the remainder on board to contain the fire. Coast Guard Regional Headquarters Mumbai diverted aircraft to assess the situation and coordinated support efforts from vessels in the area including OSVs BS Negi and Ocean Diamond. The fire was contained on Sunday evening, and Vestfonn is under tow by another ONGC vessel Malviya 24. Vestfonn is a 6,100-bhp OSV built in 1983.



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


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