Top Ten Maritime News Stories 17/01/2016

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 17/01/2016

1. Ro-Ro Fire Cripples Ship
The U.S. Coast Guard and good Samaritan vessels are responding to a U.S.-flagged vehicle carrier which caught fire and is now adrift approximately 130 miles south of Southwest Pass, Louisiana with 20 crewmembers aboard. The Coast Guard says it received a report at 3:38 a.m. Monday from the National Command Center of an electrical fire in the engine room of the "M/V Alliance St. Louis". The fire on board has been extinguished by crewmembers, but the 199-meter vessel is currently on emergency power and drifting in the Gulf of Mexico as it awaits the arrival of a tugboat. All 20 crew members are reported safe.

2. Major Shipping Deal
Standard Chartered has announced the completion of three shipping finance deals in excess of $1.6bn concluded in the third quarter of 2016 for clients in Asia and the Middle East. The three separate deals were done in December, November and October last year for BW Gas JuJu LNG Limited, National Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia (Bahri), and subsidiaries of Reliance Group, respectively. In December last year, Standard Chartered closed a $684.5m, up to 12-year non-recourse shipping finance facility for BW Gas JuJu LNG, a joint venture partnership between BW Group and Marubeni.
3. Shock at Ore Giants
Brazilian mining giant Vale has shipped the first cargo of iron ore from the company’s giant new mine in the Amazon known as S11D. The company said that three ships were loaded at Vale’s expanded Ponta da Madeira Maritime Terminal in São Luís on Friday. The cargo included approximately 26,500 tons of iron ore that was extracted from the S11D mine, located in Canaã dos Carajás in southeast Pará, Brazil. With production capacity of 90 million metric tons of iron ore per year, the S11D is the largest project in Vale’s history and one of the largest mining projects in the world.
4. Shipyard Raided in Bribe Case
Dutch investigators have raided the Netherlands’ biggest ship builder, Damen Shipyards, as part of a criminal investigation into a foreign bribery case, the finance ministry’s anti-fraud agency said on Monday. Investigators from Fiscal Information and Investigation Service seized documents from the shipbuilder’s head office in Gorinchem during the raid, which was carried out last week, said agency spokeswoman Valentine Hoen. No arrests had been made so far in connection with the case, Hoen said. The privately-held Damen employs 9,000 staff and had a turnover of 2.1 billion euros ($2.23 billion) in 2015.
5. Flag Works for Owners
Every ship operator, large or small, needs to comply with international, regional, and national regulations and the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI) Maritime Administrator’s team of experts guide those companies whose ships fly the RMI flag through the complex rules and provide practical advice for real world situations. “Empowering ship operators with consistent regulations, balancing the role of the regulator with that of the commercial environment, and explaining how the rules should be interpreted, are what I see as the main roles of the modern flag State,” says Rob Lomas.
6. Vessel Drags Anchor
Strong winds caused a large cargo ship to drag anchor and run aground near Livorno, Italy last week, but AIS data shows that as of Monday the ship had been refloated. According to reports the 128-meter "MV Sigma ran" aground Friday Jan. 13 near the village of Ardenza, Italy in winds gusting up to 50 knots.
The Italian Coast Guard said Monday that all 18 crew members on board are safe and no pollution has been reported during the incident. The MV Sigma was refloated with the assistance of tugs early Monday morning. Later in the AIS showed MV Sigma was moored at the port of Livorno.
7. Support for Seafarers
The Apostleship of the Sea (AoS) has provided support to a group of seafarers after their colleague fell ill on board and had to be airlifted to hospital last Friday. The bulk carrier HC Jette Marit was stationed four miles east off Sunderland when its chief engineer suffered a possible heart attack on board and the alarm was raised, prompting a dramatic rescue at sea. Apostleship of the Sea (AoS) Tyne port chaplain Paul Atkinson received a tip-off about the incident and contacted AoS Sunderland ship visitor Sr Mary Scholastica, who boarded the ship to assist the crew as soon as it docked at Sunderland Port.
8. Search for Crewman Called Off
The air and sea search for a missing crew member from the bulk carrier SBI Samba has been called off, after local authorities said the timeframe for the man’s survival would have expired. The 47-year-old Filipino seafarer was last seen at 1300hrs AEDT on January 12 but was not noticed missing until four hours later, during which time the ship had travelled more than 60 nautical miles south. The seafarer is believed to have gone overboard somewhere off the Queensland coast between Innisfail and Lucinda, while transiting the inner reef.
9. The Reluctant Rescuee
A seafarer was evacuated from his ship off Sunderland in a coordinated operation between a volunteer lifeboat crew and a UK Coastguard rescue helicopter, after a call from the captain of the geared bulker "HC Jette-Marit", who reported that his chief engineer may have suffered a heart attack. The vessel was about four miles east of Sunderland, where it was due to anchor. However, the situation was somewhat complicated: the chief, a Ukrainian national, refused to be evacuated from the ship by helicopter. He signed a disclaimer confirming his intentions. He was persuaded to evacuate by sea instead.
10. ITF Action on Abandonment
An ITF inspector has issued a last ditch call to a shipowner and its flag state to act to stop the suffering of a 17 seafarers abandoned in Algeria. ITF inspector Mohamed Arrachedi says the crew of the Panama-flagged, Turkish-owned "Seahonest" has been stranded, unpaid and unprovisioned, in the Port of Algiers for seven months. “The crew are on the brink,” says Arrachedi. “I believe there’s a real risk of suicide – that’s how desperate they are. The company has washed its hands of them, yet continues to operate other vessels. It’s a human disgrace. The crew includes two Turkish and 15 Indian nationals.

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


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