Top Ten Maritime News Stories 14/03/2017

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 14/03/2017

1. Somali Pirates Hijack Tanker
Somali pirates are believed to have hijacked a Sri Lankan tanker in the Indian Ocean on Monday in what would be the first successful hijack of a commercial ship by Somali pirates since 2012. News agency Reuters reports that the ship sent a distress call and then turned off its tracking system. It is  now reportedly at anchor near Puntland’s Alula district. The vessel is believed to be the Dubai-owned, Sri-Lanka-flagged "Aris 13" with eight crew members on board. At least eight suspected pirates were involved in the attack.

2. Iranians Eye London
Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) is eyeing a listing on the London Stock Exchange to help push through its dramatic fleet expansion plans, according to Reuters. IRISL officials have been in the British capital recently to discuss a possible IPO. After years of sanctions IRISL’s fleet has faded. Its 26 ships afloat today are old and worth little. However, in December it ordered 10 new ships at Hyundai Heavy Industries for an estimated $626m and has plans to order plenty more in the coming months.

3. Revolution on Eco Power
Norsepower in partnership with Maersk Tankers, the Energy Technologies Institute (ETI), and Shell Shipping & Maritime, today announced that it will install and trial Flettner rotor sails onboard a Maersk Tankers-owned vessel. The project will be the first installation of wind-powered energy technology on a product tanker vessel, and will provide insights into fuel savings and operational experience. The rotor sails will be fitted during the first half of 2018, before undergoing testing and data analysis at sea until the end of 2019.
4. US Issues Ballast Clarification
The US Coast Guard (USCG) has issued a clarification over its policy on granting extensions for ship owners to comply with the new ballast water management (BWM) rules. Those rules require ship owners to use one of the USCG’s approved BWM methods, one of which is to install and use a US type-approved BWM System (BWMS). USCG has, for several months now, been issuing type-approval certificates for BWMS which meet a higher standard than those of the International Maritime Organization (IMO).
5. OCIMF Acts on Inert Gas
The Oil Companies International Marine Forum’s latest information paper, released on 13 March, addresses the use of inert gas for the carriage of flammable oil cargoes. In it OCIMF fully supports the IMO introduction (from 1 January 2016) of the mandatory fitting to new build tankers 8,000 DWT and over, of an inert gas system when carrying flammable cargoes. OCIMF encourages the fitting of inert gas systems to all new tankers carrying flammable oil cargoes, regardless of size.

6. Ship Smashes Coral Reef
One of the main coral reefs at Raja Ampat, an Indonesian island chain home to perhaps the world’s richest marine biodiversity, was severely damaged last week when a Bahamian-flagged cruise ship smashed into it at low tide, according to an official report. The 90-meter "Caledonian Sky", owned by tour operator Noble Caledonia, ran aground in an uncharted shoal in West Papua province after completing a bird-watching trip on Waigeo Island on 4 March. The British-owned company described the incident as “unfortunate” and said it was “cooperating fully with the relevant authorities”.
7. Stowaways Found Dead
Russian authorities in Kaliningrad are investigating the deaths of two likely stowaways who were found in a cargo hold of the bulk carrier Lady Serra which had docked at Svetly port over the weekend. The ship came from Nigeria. While in transit four other stowaways were found on the ship.
The handy ship is owned by Turkey’s Deval Transport.
8. Retrofitting Debate
Scrapping of older tonnage or retrofitting will be one the main talking points in the shipping industry as we edge closer to the realization of major regulatory changes. According to shipbroker Charles R. Weber, “while While ship owners who are unable to decouple their IOPP survey from their dry dock schedule should buy more time, others may simply decide to scrap rather than spend more money on aging vessels. There is a much broader regulation, facing a far greater section of the maritime industry that we feel needs discussions. The decision by the IMO to enforce a 0.5% sulfur cap on all marine bunkers on January 1, 2020.
9. LR Acts on Cyber
Recognising the need to go further than ensuring the safe integration of cyber technology, LR has launched the next stream in its cyber and digitalisation suite of services. The new end-to-end set of solutions addresses the need to keep people, assets and systems secure within the constantly changing cyber security landscape. In addition to establishing mandatory cyber security requirements since November 2016, LR has evolved its services, to ensure the provision remains consistently relevant, robust and up-to-date.
10. North Korean Ship Sinks
A North Korean cargo vessel called "Kum San" sank off the east coast of China early on March 9 after colliding with a Chinese fuel tanker, which rescued 27 crew members, the Ministry of Transport said in a statement on Monday. The collision took place near the port of Lianyuanhang in Jiangsu province at 4 a.m., the government said in the statement. The boat sank by 6 a.m. This is the second reported sinking of a North Korea cargo ship since January. The ship did not appear on a United Nations list of sanctioned North Korean vessels.

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


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