Top Ten Maritime News Stories 15/08/2017

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 15/08/2017

1. Grounded Giant Floats Off
Cosco Shipping’s 14,000 teu containership "CSCL Jupiter", which ran aground on the Scheldt Estuary off Bath near Antwerp Port yesterday, has been successfully refloated. An initial attempt to refloat the vessel failed yesterday morning, however last night around 8:30pm a second attempt was made utilising a dozen tugs and the vessel was refloated a little over 30 minutes later. The ship has returned to Antwerp Port and been unloaded while inspections take place. Port  operations at Antwerp, one of the busiest box ports in northern Europe, have returned to normal.
2. Bibby Line Fire 

Crew were evacuated yesterday off a fire-ridden bulk carrier carrying fertilizer off the Canary Islands. The fire was first reported on Sunday onboard the UK-flagged "Cheshire", owned by Bibby Line, but the ship was denied entry to Las Palmas. Yesterday morning the ship suffered a series of explosions and two Spanish search and rescue helicopters were deployed to take the 24 crew off the burning vessel. The ship is now 80 nautical miles south the Canaries and it remains unclear whether the ship will be scuttled or will find a port willing to take it in.
3. Multiple Pirate Convictions
In the third case involving Somali pirates, 27 men were convicted and sentenced to seven years imprisonment by a sessions court on Friday. The men have been convicted under charges, including attempt to murder, kidnapping and relevant sections of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and Arms Act. They were acquitted of charges, including culpable homicide not amounting to murder and kidnapping for ransom.

4. Locals Loot Containers
Brazilian officials have arrested at least 11 people caught looting containers that had fallen from a cargo ship near the port of Santos. Local people had gone out in small boats to the floating containers, taking consumer goods including bicycles and clothing. Port officials said 45 containers had worked loose from the ship’s deck. An investigation is under way to work out the cause of the accident. Police said the thieves had used small boats to reach the containers and had picked up air-conditioning units, other white goods, clothing, hospital equipment and bags.

5. Mystery Collision Vessels Identified
A Singapore container ship and a Japanese-owned chemical tanker have been identified by the trade press as the two vessels involved in a collision in Chinese waters that led to Hong Kong’s beaches being awash with jelly-like palm oil. The spill earlier this month forced the Hong Kong authorities to close 13 popular beaches around the city as hundreds of volunteers and staff raced to scoop up the acrid-smelling clumps in one of the Chinese territory’s worst environmental disasters. Japan-based Global Marine Service’s (GMS) Global Apollon and Singapore’s Pacific International Lines’ (PIL) Kota Ganteng collided off Guishan Islands.

6. Hyundai Stuck in Rut
Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) handled 46% more containers between April and June this year than last, but its freight rate strategy has kept the South Korean carrier heavily in the red. HMM’s revenue was up by 22% to KRW1.24trn on liftings of 986,000 teu, but it appears that the carrier has opted for a business plan of growth over profit, as its trading resulted in a KRW128bn ($112m) loss for the quarter. The cumulative loss for the six months was KRW254bn, which, however, is a significant improvement on the loss of KRW417bn recorded for H1 2016.

7. Asylum Pirate Arrested
Italian police have arrested a 24-year-old Somali asylum seeker on charges of being one of a gang of pirates who seized an Italian oil tanker in the Persian Gulf in 2011. The tanker and its crew were held hostage for 10 months until a reported $11 million ransom was paid. Mohammed Farah was caught by Carabinieri special force police officers after he applied for asylum as a refugee in the Sicilian town of Caltanissetta, police said. Officers used fingerprint records to identify him as one of 50 alleged pirates who stormed the Savina Caylyn tanker on February 8, 2011, using rocket-propelled grenades and automatic weapons.

8. Kuwait Contains Spill
The government of Kuwait said Monday that it has contained a large oil spill near Al-Zour, and it expects to finish the cleanup of adjacent shorelines within a week. Power and water plant intakes had been temporarily secured in order to prevent contamination, but as of Monday, Kuwaiti official news outlet Kuna said that production was back to normal.  Environmental activists say that the spill likely began the middle of last week. Experts estimate its size at about 35,000 barrels, and Kuwaiti media suggest that the source may have been an aging pipeline from the Al-Khafji offshore oilfield. 
9. Fatigue Factors Examined
Fatigue is a well known factor as a cause numerous maritime and non-maritime accidents worldwide. In fact driving while fatigued is considered just as bad as driving while under the influence. The requirements under the new Manilla amendments call for vessels and seafarers to log their work or rest hours to meet the standards set out under STCW 2010 or the MLC 2006. Anyone who has ever gone to sea however can tell you that these measures, although a step in the right direction do not necessarily mitigate fatigue anywhere near as well as the IMO and ILO lawmakers expect.
10. Rescuers Back Away
Humanitarian NGOs Save the Children, Sea Eye and Doctors Without Borders (MSF) have all suspended their maritime rescue operations off Libya, citing threats from the navy of the Libyan Government of National Accord. The UN-backed government’s military has threatened to use force to expel NGOs from a "rescue zone" extending beyond the 12 nm limit of Libya’s territorial seas. NGO rescue vessels often operate just outside the 12-nm line, but Libyan forces now claim the right to interdict rescue ships in a zone extending out to 70 nm from the coast, well into international waters.

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


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