Top Ten Maritime News Stories 21/08/2015

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 21/08/2015

1. Seafarer Runs Amok

Portuguese maritime police stormed a Liberian flagged general cargo ship yesterday after a sailor of Turkish origin ran amok, brandishing knives and an axe and threatening to set fire to the vessel. The 4,757 dwt Celine (built 2011) was passing through international waters off Sesimbra in Portugal when local authorities received messages from the ship’s bridge of the carnage ensuing. The ship, owned by Turkey’s Vento Deniz Isletmeleri, was headed to the North African port of Ceuta carrying wood pulp. Special forces were deployed from four Portuguese ports to intercept the ship. The attacker was soon detected  and surrendered.




2. Named and Shamed

The Norwegian Maritime Authority (NMD) has named the first vessel it says broke this year’s updated Emissions Control Area (ECA) rules, with two infractions coming within the first few weeks of the tightened regulations coming into force on January 1, 2015. The freighter Sardius, and which is owned by Dutch company De Bock Maritiem B.V. (De Bock), was said to have been inspected after it docked at Florø on February 5, 2015 and was found to have used illegal fuel earlier that day, as well as on January 8, 2015. De Bock, which is said to have a fleet of three ships that frequent Norwegian coast, has reportedly been ordered to pay $100,000.



3. Saved from Pirate Attacks

Iran’s naval forces saved two foreign cargo vessels from pirates in two separate operations in the Gulf of Aden, a military official announced. Deputy Commander of Iranian Navy Rear Admiral Mahmoud Mousavi said the Navy’s 35th Fleet of warships was informed of an attack by pirates on a foreign cargo ship. The fleet, which was the closest military unit to the ship, managed to arrive at the scene in the right time, repelling the attackers using its heavy artillery, he noted. Four hours later, he added, the pirates tried to attack another foreign cargo ship, but they were once again faced with the Iranian navy’s rapid reaction and fled.


4. Experts Disagree on Piracy Data

Academics appear to have become hot under the collar as they argue over which data sets are better…IMB or ReCAAP. Sam Bateman recently questioned the International Maritime Bureau (IMB) data which indicates a rise in piracy and incidents at sea in Southeast Asia. Favouring instead data from ReCAAP. Both the ReCAAP and IMB data, which rely on vessels to report incidents, have discrepancies. While all data has its failings one should be careful not to throw the baby out with the bathwater. Like the IMB data, ReCAAP data shows year-on-year increases of incidents during the January to June period.



5. Ship Vanishes from Port

Mexican authorities are looking for a 142-meter ship, property of oil services company Oceanografía SA, that is no longer at its mooring in Veracruz. It has been revealed the offshore supply ship "Caballo Maya" has disappeared and its current location is unknown. Its loss puts at risk the reactivation process that is currently under way at the company, which was seized last year by the federal government, said a judge involved in the case. Indications that things were not above board at Oceanografía, a major supplier to Petróleos Mexicanos, surfaced in 2005 when the Federal Auditor’s Office found fake invoices and other irregularities.




6. Migrant Cruise Ship Arrives

A cruise ship has brought hundreds of migrants from Syria to Europe’s southern border. The Venizelos has 2,500 people on board. The vessel has brought them to Piraeus, the port of Athens, from the holiday island of Kos where they first came ashore. Young, old, families and lone travellers alike, they say they are exhausted and frightened after fleeing the conflict in their country. “Maybe we could go anywhere,” one woman told reporters on the quayside, “ but we don’t know where. We will see which place will let us bring our family”. Local authority buses were waiting to take the new arrivals to the nearest train station.



7. Contractors Fall from Crane

Londonderry Port, Northern Ireland, has confirmed that an accident has occurred in which contractors fell into ship’s hold. In a statement the Londonderry Port and Harbour Commissioners said: “We are aware of an incident at Lisahally Terminal this morning. “Three contractors have suffered a fall in the hold of a ship during a lifting operation. “Emergency services responded and the men are currently being treated in hospital for their injuries.  “We will be carrying out an investigation into what has taken place.”



8. Singapore Looks to Youth Market

The Singapore Shipping Association’s recently elected president, Esben Poulsson, outlined the influential maritime association’s programme earlier this week, emphasising Singapore’s public support for creating seafaring and land-based maritime jobs. Mr Poulsson spoke of creating “a wow factor for the maritime industry to woo the younger generation; to look more closely at sustainability issues; and establish how best to be future-ready.” Specifically, the SSA is looking at making “meaningful contributions to the workings and development of the Tripartite Maritime Manpower Taskforce initiatives,” the organisation said in a release.




9. Too Many Enclosed Space Accidents

There are too many fatal accidents involving enclosed spaces aboard ship, in tanks, holds and elsewhere. The 1st January this year saw a new SOLAS Regulation 19 , which requires all ships to carry out mandatory entry and rescue drills every two months. Just how effectively this new regulation is being implemented is being put to the test next month, when on the 1st September, the Paris and Tokyo MOUs on Port State Control commence a three month Concentrated Inspection Campaign to check compliance. It is expected that some 10,000 ships will be inspected throughout the two MOUs during this period.




10. Liner Reliability Falls

Breaking a run of six consecutive months of improvement, container service reliability across the three main East-West trades declined in July, falling by 4.0 percentage points from June to 73.3%, according to Carrier Performance Insight, the online schedule reliability tool provided by Drewry Supply Chain Advisors. The latest overall monthly performance was the result of lower reliability scores in the Asia-Europe and Transpacific trades, although service punctuality for the far smaller Transatlantic route was raised to a new data series high.




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


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S Jones
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