Top Ten Maritime News Stories 07/02/2017

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 07/02/2017

1. Shivering Seafarers Going Unpaid
Seafarers onboard a ship held at Fawley Port in the south of the UK were found to be without warm clothing for days and their wages unpaid for three months. The chemical tanker, "Sea Emperor", was detained by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency on January 28, after it was found to have various equipment deficiencies. There was also a lack of cleaning products onboard. Sea Emperor is managed by Greek firm, Perosea Shipping.
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2. IMO Set to Fight Fatigue
IMO is set to revise its seafarer fatigue guidance as it digests the results of a three-year study into the long-term effects of tiredness on crew. IMO’s human element, training and watchkeeping sub-committee met in London last week to discuss the results of the Martha project, which found seafarers suffer from increasing levels of fatigue and stress. Researchers found that fatigue can result in long-term physical and mental health issues. 
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3. End to Gas Scraps
Officials in Pakistan have halted the scrapping of oil and LPG tankers at the Gadani Shipbreaking Yard, one of the largest demolition yards in South Asia, following a string of fatal accidents involving ships of this type. The ban was imposed during a high-level meeting with government representatives and stakeholders. The ban is expected to be in effect until proper safety mechanisms are put in place to ensure the safety of workers at the yards. 
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4. Maersk Heir Making Picks
Like his grandfather before him Robert Uggla has formed his own private investment vehicle to make his own shipping picks, according to Danish title InsideBusiness. The vehicle will invest in companies and assets with shipping very much a key focus. Uggla, the presumptive heir to the Maersk throne, is the grandson of Maersk Mc-Kinney Møller, who died in 2012, aged 98. Møller liked to make his own private investments outside of the Maersk Group.
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5. Offshore Market Mega Shake-Up
The consolidation seen across the Norwegian OSV scene reached its apogee with the nation’s biggest maritime magnates forging a dramatic merger that will see Farstad Shipping, Solstad Offshore and Deep Sea Supply join forces. Aker tycoon Kjell Inge Røkke and John Fredriksen have agreed a restructuring plan of Farstad Shipping as well as merging their own OSV entities with Farstad to create one of the biggest fleets with Solstad as the lead stakeholder.
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6. US El Faro Investigation
The U.S. investigation into the sinking of a cargo ship during a 2015 hurricane has entered its final hearing, with ship conditions probed at the start of two weeks of testimony set to examine new detail on El Faro’s last hours. The Coast Guard’s Marine Board of Investigation, convened only for the most serious accidents, is looking for evidence of negligence or misconduct in the worst disaster involving a U.S.-flagged vessel in more than three decades.
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7. Storm Batters Gulf Shores
Over the weekend, a storm drove five cargo vessels ashore in Sharjah and Umm Al Quwain in the United Arab Emirates. Additionally, one vessel went down off Sharjah, with four seafarers rescued, three confirmed dead and an unknown number still missing. The name of the sunken vessel has not been released.  "It will take some time until the ships are removed. The sea is still rough and it might affect the removal," said a local official.
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8. Seafarers Warned on STIs
Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are extremely common – it is estimated that up to 75% of sexually active people will contract an STI of some kind in their life time. For seafarers, the likelihood of contracting an STI is further increased, due to their unsettled lifestyles and a lack of access to necessary precautions. The ITF recently carried out an extensive survey and found a distinct gap in knowledge with regards to safe sex and the transmission of STIs. 
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9. US Exports Boost Tankers
It has long be touted as a potential “game-changer” for the crude tanker market and it now seems to be gaining traction. US oil exports in quantities enough to make a difference on the market, appear to be on the radar for ship owners, especially after the ascension of Donald Trump in office. In its latest weekly report, shipbroker Brokers noted Trump’s actions in, “providing a more direct route from Canada to the US Gulf Coast" would boost markets.
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10. Fear for the Seabed
Scientists fear that even before the ocean deep, has been properly studied it will already have been exploited and damaged by commercial deepsea mining looking for rare metal and minerals on the ocean floor. The mining industry has been developing technologies to extract metals and minerals at depths of over 500 meters, and it’s expected that commercial mining will start for the first time in 2018 off Papua New Guinea with the Solwara 1 project.
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Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions  www.seacurus.com

 

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S Jones
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