Top Ten Maritime News Stories 19/06/2017

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 19/06/2017

1. Sailors Found and Identified
The bodies of a number of sailors who were missing after the "USS Fitzgerald", a U.S. Navy destroyer, collided with the Philippine-flagged, NYK-chartered container ship "ACX Crystal" at approximately 2:30 a.m. local time, June 17, while operating about 56 nautical miles southwest of Yokosuka, Japan. The sailors were found in flooded compartments of the damaged ship, the U.S. Seventh Fleet said on Sunday. Japanese media said all seven of the sailors who had been reported missing were found dead. “Divers were able to access the space and found a number of bodies,” the Seventh Fleet said in a statement.
2. Rickmers Needs a Hero

Embattled Rickmers Holding has appointed Macquarie Capital to try and get investors to come in and save the German shipping line. At the start of the month Rickmers became the biggest shipping casualty since Hanjin, officially filing for insolvency on, in the wake of HSH Nordbank failing to approve its restructuring plan. Chaired by Bertram Rickmers, the group currently own 33 live container vessels, with four more on order, as well as four dry bulkers and two vehicle carriers. The group is also a large vessel charterer, with a total combined chartered and owned fleet comprising of 114 vessels.

3. Ferry Grounded Passengers Rescued
The Coast Guard teamed-up with local responders late Friday and early Saturday to rescue 55 people stranded aboard a high-speed ferry that hit a jetty while entering Hyannis Harbor. The local fire department notified watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Southeastern New England at about 9:30 p.m. Friday and reported that the Massachusetts Steamship Authority Ferry Iyanough, which serves Nantucket to Hyannis, struck the jetty and grounded on the rocks. An HH-60 helicopter crew from Air Station Cape Cod medevacd five injured passengers and airlifted 10 uninjured people who were unable to navigate the jetty’s rocks.

4. IMO on Autonomous Ships
The IMO Maritime Safety Committee will start to establish a new international legal framework for the safe operation of autonomous ships. Together with a number of countries, Denmark, has taken the initiative to include autonomous shipping on the IMO agenda. United Nations’ International Maritime Organization (IMO) is in line with the proposal and will now start mapping how existing international regulation can be applied to autonomous ships and maritime technologies; technologies that are developing rapidly these years.
5. Seafarers Freed to Go Home
Seafarers who have been held in Soyo, Angola, for the past three months due to accusations of the alleged theft of fuel were cleared of all charges on June 15 and are now free to go home. When contacted, trade union Nautilus said it is still awaiting the confirmation that the six seafarers have been released.
“A judge has ruled that there is insufficient evidence to lay any charges. The crew should now be free to return pending the payment of some court fees which should be paid by the company,” a representative of Nautilus said.
6. Dock Strike Heavy Cost
The latest round of dockworker strikes in Spain has cost the country EUR 110 million (USD 123 million), Spanish Ministry of Public Works said. The dockworkers launched a 48-hour strike on Wednesday, June 14 across Spanish ports after they were unable to reach a deal with employers’ association Anesco on job guarantees. However, the association is reviewing a new framework agreement for the regulation of labor relations in the stevedoring sector proposed by the unions, which, if approved, might bring an end to the dispute. Furthermore, during the said two-day strike 34 ships were diverted from Spanish ports.
7.  NYK Pride in Data
NYK Line‘s approach to big data is a source of corporate pride. When fuel prices were on a steep rise in 2005 and 2006, NYK Line began looking for new ways to lower bunker costs. Various technical solutions were considered, and fuel consumption was analyzed in the context of vessel speed, location, sea region and other factors – weather conditions in particular turned out to have a major influence on ship performance.  Over time, NYK Line built a database of operational information and discovered various areas where we needed to change our operating patterns.
8. Step Change for Safety
Dr. Grahaeme Henderson, President of the U.K. Chamber of Shipping, has called for a step change in shipping safety. "Our shipping industry has a fatal accident rate 20 times that of the average British worker and five times that of construction," he said. "In the last 10 years globally, there have been 60 seafarer fatalities and 145 serious injuries from testing of lifeboats alone! "These are unacceptable statistics and we need to work together to make a significant step change improvement in safety. That is why, at the U.K. Chamber of Shipping, we are working relentlessly to improve the safety performance".

9. Sea Traffic Management Plans
The E.U.-funded Sea Traffic Management (STM) Validation Project has undergone its first operational tests. The STM project is a follow on from the E.U.-funded MONALISA 2.0 project which developed a system that enables vessel route information to be shared between ships and centers on shore. The STM Validation Project encompasses 39 partners (private, public and academic) from 13 countries and with a total budget of 43 million Euros ($45 million). The project will run from 2015 to 2018.
10. Mooring Line Failings Explored
The U.K. Marine Accident Investigation Branch has released its report on the investigation of the failure of a mooring line on board the LNG carrier Zarga which resulted in serious injury to a deck officer. A deck officer suffered severe head injuries when he was struck by a parted  high modulus polyethylene fiber (HMPE) mooring rope during a berthing operation at South Hook LNG terminal, Milford Haven on May 2, 2015. The area where the officer was standing was clearly within the snap back zone of the rope but had previously been designated as a safe area. The perception on board was that HMPE ropes did not recoil on failure.

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