Top Ten Maritime News Stories 27/07/2017

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 27/07/2017
1. Ships Getting Too Complicated
Maritime safety experts suggest that human failure is still top of the agenda when it comes to improving safety. However, in an age where ships are becoming more complex, is technology partly to blame? “I was on a ship and in order to look at the read outs of equipment and to operate [it], you had to be like an octopus.” It comes across as slightly tongue-in-cheek, but Allan Graveson, senior national secretary at Nautilus International, is deadly serious. 
2. Panama Claw Business Back 
Just over a year since its expansion, the Panama Canal has clawed back most of the all-water traffic between Asia and the east coast of North America, which it temporarily lost to Suez. The Panama Canal’s share of total headhaul capacity on the all-water route now stands at 74%, according to analysts at Alphaliner, a return to the level which the route enjoyed in 2010. At its lowest point, in early 2016, the Panama Canal only commanded 48% of this tradelane.
3. Diana Ship Runs Aground
The 76,436 dwt dry bulk vessel "Melite" has run aground off the coast of Pulau Laut, Indonesia, according to data provided by the ship’s owner, Athens-based shipping firm Diana Shipping. The company informed that the crew is in no danger as a result of this incident and there has been no pollution. Although the situation is still under assessment, Diana Shipping said that it appears that the vessel has suffered damage to its hull as a result of the grounding.
4. Fear of Content, Not Connectivity
It is being said that shipowners are as concerned about content as cost when it comes to internet access for crews. In the years since the first digital services were launched into the maritime communications market, its providers have sought to remind the industry that, the cost of communications at sea have fallen consistently. Despite estimates that communications account for just 1% of daily operating costs, some owners are unwilling to provide crew access.
5. Vietnam Under Chinese Threats
Following alleged "threats" from China, Vietnam has ordered Spanish oil firm Repsol to halt exploration near Vanguard Bank in the South China Sea. Diplomatic sources report that China threatened to attack Vietnamese installations in the Spratly Islands if Repsol did not halt its work. Vanguard lies about 200 nm southeast of Vung Tao, and Vietnam has maintained a series of manned outposts at the bank since the 1980s
6. Collision Ship Repaired
The owners of the "ACX Crystal", the 2,900 teu boxship involved in a deadly collision with the "USS Fitzgerald" off Japan on June 16, is back in service.  Dainichi-Invest Corporation, the owners of the boxship, report that the ACX Crystal has been repaired and safety inspection have been passed. The ship left the repair dock and departed the next day for Laem Chabang in Thailand to resume service. The ship is on charter to Japan’s Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK).
7. Rigid Sail Power Beckons
Eco Marine Power (EMP) has begun preparing for sea trials of its Aquarius Marine Renewable Energy (MRE) solution in co-operation with strategic partners and shipowner Hisafuku Kisen of Onomichi, Japan. This preparatory work will lead to the world’s first installation of an integrated rigid sail and solar power system for ships using EMP’s patented technologies including the EnergySail.
8. Another Offshore Play Folds
Offshore vessel operator Emas Offshore, one of the only companies in the Ezra Holdings group that hasn’t filed for bankruptcy protection, says the High Court of Singapore has ordered the winding-up of its fully-owned subsidiary Lewek Champion Pte Ltd at the request of Hai Jiang 1401, a special purpose vehicle controlled by China’s ICBC Financial Leasing.
9. Seadrill Goes to the Wall
John Fredriksen’s Seadrill has reached agreement on extending the period of its restructuring negotiations and on the maturity of two loan agreements, but still expects to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Seadrill said that its banks had agreed to extend the negotiating period on a comprehensive restructuring plan for the rig owner until 12 September. It also received consent from lenders to extend the maturity date under the $400m credit facility.
10. Suez Rebates Extended
The Suez Canal Authority has further extended rebates for containerships from ports of the East Coast of America heading to South and South East Asian ports. The discounts originally introduced in March 2016 for a limited period have been both increased and extended in duration on several occasions. The rebates, which expired on 30 June this year, have now been extended to the end of December analyst Alphaliner.

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


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S Jones
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