Top Ten Maritime News Stories 17/10/2016

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 17/10/2016

1. US Navy Fired on Again 
A U.S. Navy destroyer was again targeted in the Red Sea in an apparent failed missile attack launched from the coast of Yemen, a U.S. admiral said on Saturday. U.S. defense officials said late on Saturday an initial assessment given by Admiral John Richardson, the chief of naval operations, had yet to be finalized and the incident was still being reviewed to determine exactly what happened. The missile attack, if confirmed, would mark the third time the USS Mason was fired upon in international waters in the past week from territory in Yemen controlled by Iranian-aligned Houthi rebels.
2. P&I Concern Over Red Sea
The conflict in Yemen is escalating and two missile attacks on vessels operating off the coast of Yemen have now been reported. The first attack occurred on 1 October 2016 and targeted a vessel operated by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) military; the second occurred on 9 October 2016 and targeted a US Navy vessel. The most likely targets in the region are still considered to be military vessels, however, commercial vessels transiting the Bab-el-Mandeb Strait may face increased risk of collateral damage and must continue to operate in a heightened state of alert.
3. Africa Steps Up Piracy Battle
African leaders on Saturday signed a deal to boost security off the continent’s economically crucial coasts, hoping to shore up development by tackling maritime crimes like piracy and smuggling. Congolese President Denis Sassou Nguesso hailed the African Union agreement as "historic", while Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta said it showed Africa’s ability to put together a continent-wide strategy. Sassou Nguesso said 43 nations had adopted the binding agreement — which will see countries pay into a special fund for maritime security — at a summit in Togo’s capital Lome.

4. Ship Busted for Cocaine
Mexico’s navy has seized 136 kilos of cocaine on a container ship owned by Singapore’s Pacific International Lines at the port of Manzanillo on Saturday. The drugs were hidden among other cargo in a container on the 4,253 teu Kota Lukis, which had sailed from Buenaventura, Colombia. The crew weren’t suspected to be involved in the smuggling operations and the ship was cleared to depart the port. Manzanillo port has the highest number of drug seizures among all of Mexico’s ports, mostly shipped from Colombia and Ecuador.
5. Maersk Grounding Report
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) has released its report into the grounding of the "Maersk Garonne", highlighting failures in bridge resource management and pilotage planning. The  investigation found that bridge resource management was not effectively implemented. As a result, the ship’s bridge team was not fully engaged and did not effectively monitor the ship’s passage. While the master retained responsibility for safe navigation of the ship, the harbor pilot was the only person actively focused on the pilotage. Consequently, single-person errors went undetected or inadequately challenged and uncorrected.
6. Warning on Mooring Line Dangers
Mooring lines are clearly an essential part of the ship’s rigging and are used each time the vessel is arriving at and departing from a port, receiving tug assistance, towing another vessel or in STS operations. Claims arising from the above mentioned operations are frequently received by P&I Clubs and the most dramatic consequences are loss of life or total disability. Parting mooring lines may happen due to different factors, including but not limited to excessive wear and tear, excessive forces created by the vessel moving, wind, current, mooring winches or a combination of same.
7. Risky Times for Business
There are high level of financial risk faced by container shipping lines, according to a survey by Drewry Maritime Research. The research uncovered two other major carriers being in danger of potential financial ruin. Using its z-score rating for financial distress, the average for 14 major shipping lines that publicly disclose their financial results is at its lowest level since the index started in 2008. Collectively the 14 carriers rated scored on average less than 1.0 in the second quarter. Any score below 1.8 represents a higher risk of bankruptcy. Only AP Moller Maersk and Orient Overseas International Ltd (OOIL) – scored well.
8. Death Ship Recordings Deleted
Audio recordings are likely to have have deleted deliberately from the voyage data recorder (VDR) onboard a ship on which three crew members died or disappeared within a six-week period, a coronial inquest in Australia has heard. The shipmanagement company’s executive director failed to tell Japanese authorities there could be a link between the fatalities onboard the so-called ‘Death Ship’, according to ARM reports from the inquest in Sydney, which has been ongoing since 2014. Two Filipino seamen, chief cook Cesar Llanto and chief engineer Hector Collado, died on the Sage Sagittarius in August and September 2012.
9. Change at Top of Tanker Giant
The board of National Iranian Tanker Company (NITC) has decided to replace Ali-Akbar Safaei with Sirous Kianersi as the new managing director of the company. Safaei used to serve as head of the crude oil export planning in National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC)’s international affairs department, NIOC’s China representative, and managing director of Paad Energy Development. Safaei has been the managing director of NITC since 2013. NITC is expected to add to its fleet in a big way in the coming months with a slew of orders being lined up across East Asia.
10. Insurers Facing Major Losses
The insurance and reinsurance sector could ultimately face a loss of as much up to $2 billion due to the financial collapse and bankruptcy of Hanjin Shipping this year, according to analysts at Credit Suisse. If that size of loss manifests, it has the potential to seep through to ILS funds investing in specialty risks.
Hanjin Shipping insolvency insurance and reinsurance lossCredit Suisse’s insurance equity analysts believe that the industry will face losses either in their results this quarter or next, depending on when they log estimates for the coming business interruption impact.

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


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