Top Ten Maritime News Stories 04/04/2017

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 04/04/2017

1. Stellar Daisy Broke Up
The two rescued survivors of the VLOC Stellar Daisy, which apparently sank in the South Atlantic on Friday, have told their rescuers that the South Korean-owned vessel broke in two, according to Reuters and Korean news agencies. With search and rescue operations now into their fourth day, officials are not optimistic on finding any more of the 22 missing crew. The Stellar Daisy sent a distress message to its home company Polaris Shipping in Busan shortly before going missing. The SOS had described water entering the port side of the huge ship which began listing fast.
2. MOL Increasing Profits
Junichiro Ikeda, the president and CEO of the shipping giant MOL, has said the company is forecasting a return to profitability at the ordinary income level, while looking ahead he announced a very significant change to the way the Japanese line goes about investing. “Our existing businesses face major upheaval in the business environment,” Ikeda explained. “In this climate, we must recognise that our conventional approach to investment, based at times on a tendency to focus on balancing investments among our existing businesses, is no longer viable,” he continued.
3. Taking Unnecessary Risks
Taking an unnecessary risk to save time or get a job done more quickly, is a common theme that runs through many accidents. The UK MAIB has announced the publication of the first issue for 2017 of its Safety Digest which includes lessons learned from maritime accidents. This latest edition of the Safety Digest contains 25 articles  illustrating why it is so important to ensure that the appropriate barriers and controls are in place before commencing any task. Ashore, the ravages of the weather can be inconvenient, a distraction that mercifully rarely ends in disaster, says Steve Clinch, Chief Inspector of Marine Accidents.
4. Indian Port State Report
The Indian MOU has issued its Annual Report on the Port State Control in the Indian Ocean region (IOMOU) for 2016. A total of 6010 inspections were carried out in 2016. Out of these 6010 inspections, 3393 inspections had deficiencies and the total numbers of deficiencies were 14830. Serious deficiencies noted by the PSCOs led to the detention of 370 ships and needs to be rectified prior to the ships departure; the overall detention percentage for the year was 6.16 %. There was decrease in total number of inspections in 2016, compared with those in 2015 whereas, the detention percentage increased from 5.59 % recorded in 2015.
5. MLC State of Play
The Isle of Man has been reviewing the MLC inspection regime and accident reports received in 2016, and a number of factors have emerged. Changes to MLC regulations and Guidance have been made in 2016 and promulgated to the shipping industry. This primarily concerned the ship owner’s liability and updated Maritime Labour Notices. Isle of Man inspectors attended 138 Isle of Man registered ships worldwide and 8 companies on the Isle of Man in 2016. Of the deficiencies issued to ships the biggest source of deficiencies relates to seafarer employment agreements accounting for 25% of all deficiencies issued in 2016.
6. You’ve Already Been Hacked
George Ward, Project Support, ECDIS Ltd, warns there are companies/ships in the maritime industry which either have been already hacked or they just have realised it, considering that the cyber incident occurred due to an infection on a random PC. He predicts the first catastrophic maritime cyber incident will not be the result of a direct attack on a safety critical specific piece of equipment.  It will be the result of an infection on a random PC, perhaps an unassuming email to a crew member, whose PC is either connected to the vessels internal ‘super highway’ or he transmits the infection internally whilst it lies dormant. 

7. Speak Up on Accidents
Videotel, a KVH company, has announced the launch of a new training programme, “Report a Near-Miss, Save a Life”, in association with the Standard Club P&I club, which insures ship owners, operators, and charterers for their liabilities to third parties. The training programme examines the importance of sharing near-miss reports, so that lessons can be learned and publicised throughout a fleet, to help reduce the chances of similar incidents happening. Although standards have improved, 75% of incidents received by CHIRP, during the past 12 years, could be traced to human factors.
8. Nigerian Attack Reports
A report on Nigerian piracy has shown, once again, that certain vessel characteristics, such as low freeboard and speed, can make a vessel a more attractive to pirate gangs. The new report also states that commercial vessels that can be boarded from the water are at risk of being attacked when they are navigating in piracy risk waters. Attacks off Nigeria typically see between 3-15 heavily armed pirates will approach a victim vessel using 1-2 speedboats. This period poses the greatest risk to those onboard, as pirates are often intoxicated with drugs and alcohol, may fire indiscriminately and are anxious to depart.
9. Celebrating Western Ports
April 4 is Western Hemisphere Ports Day, a day of recognition acknowledging the industry’s role as a key driver of job creation and economic prosperity. The day recognizes the industry’s commitment to education, training and environmental stewardship initiatives on behalf of the communities they serve across Canada and the Americas. A collaboration between the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) and the Association of Canadian Port Authorities (ACPA), celebrations will involve Canada’s 18 Port Authorities and hundreds of ports in North, Central and South America and the Caribbean.
10. Zombie Companies Threaten Recovery
Any horror aficionado knows that the only good zombie is a dead zombie. Don’t risk trying to bring one back to life. It’ll just come back to bite you. Apparently, policymakers haven’t watched enough B-movies. Worried about layoffs and soured loans, governments and banks across Asia continue to dole out cheap financing and other support to keep failing firms — corporate zombies — alive. The hope is that they’ll become sustainable businesses again if growth revives. But in fact, these same companies are undermining the global economy, wasting resources, and stifling productivity gains.

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