Top Ten Maritime News Stories 09/10/2017

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 09/10/2017

1. Isolating Bad Owners
The world’s largest third party shipmanagers with one notable exception – Executive Ship Management – have today pledged not to conduct business with any owner who has a recent history of abandoning crews, in the first step of a Splash campaign to engage key stakeholders and help quash the scourge of ditching seafarers. The heads of V.Group, Anglo-Eastern Univan, Wallem Group, Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement, Columbia Marlow, Fleet Management and Thome Group have all signed up to the initiative with other sectors in shipping also being canvassed to shun shipowners who abandon crews. 
2. Piracy Attack Thwarted
Commandos aboard Navy vessel "INS Trishul" thwarted a piracy attempt on an Indian ship, the 82,000-ton cargo carrier "MV Jaga Mar", in the Gulf of Aden. Both the ship, and the 26 Indian crew members on board are safe, the Navy has said. The vessel radioed for assistance, and the Navy’s stealth frigate – which is on anti-piracy duty – responded immediately, Navy Spokesperson Captain DK Sharma reported. The boarding operation saw weapons, ammunition, as well as grapnels, ropes, fuel drums & ladders recovered from the accused pirates.
3. Tanker Under Fire
The Libyan Coast Guard fired on a product tanker, "Goeast", after the ship was caught taking oil out of the country without official permission and then disobeyed orders to stop. The ship, flying the Comoros flag and owned by Ukrainian interests, was strafed with 30 mm ammunition west of Zuwarah. The ship spilled very significant volumes of diesel in the process. “The coastguard wanted to send a clear message to traffickers … to smuggling vessels … to all those who dare to touch (the resources of) the Libyan people in the future,” the navy said.

4. Gulf Production Slashed
About 71 percent of U.S. Gulf of Mexico oil production is offline ahead of Tropical Storm Nate, the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) reported. Nate was forecast to enter the Gulf and strengthen into a hurricane before making landfall late Saturday in Louisiana, near several major refineries. Oil companies have evacuated staff from Gulf platforms and curtailed output ahead of the storm, with production equaling 1.24 million barrels of crude per day already offline, according to BSEE. About 53.2 percent of Gulf natural gas production remains offline, BSEE said.
5. Too Little Understanding
One industry commentator has been commenting that too many shipowners and ship financiers have little or no understanding of what the future holds for the shipping industry. Whether its unmanned ships, cyber this or digital that, the industry media might be full of the buzzwords of transformation shipping is set to go through, but those at the sharp end, the owners and bankers, in the main are paying lip service at best to this revolution, something that could ultimately wipe many out of business if they fail to join the digital dots.

6. Images of Ravaged Bulker
A new photo released by Spanish Maritime Search and Rescue Society shows just what can happen when 50,000 tons of fertilizer overheats during transit.  The photo shows the 56,000 dwt British bulk carrier "MV Cheshire", which suffered a cargo fire in August off the coast of the Canary Islands during a passage from Norway to Thailand with a cargo of ammonium nitrate fertilizer.  The cargo in all five of the ship’s cargo holds burned for two straight weeks until there was no more fertilizer to burn. Cheshire’s crew abandoned the ship a few days into the slow-burning fire. 
7. IMO Biofoul Moves
The IMO is also moving its attention to hull biofouling with the recent launch of a new global project, the GloFouling Partnership. The project will focus on the implementation of the IMO Guidelines for the control and management of ships’ biofouling (resolution MEPC.207(62)). For now, the Guidelines are not mandatory, and, for now, they are just one of the biofouling management protocols in operation as countries, such as New Zealand develop unilateral approaches.
8. Diana Selling Ships
Greek owner Diana Containerships says it has sealed an agreement to sell up to seven of its containerships for a total of up to $104m. Separate MOAs have been signed for each vessel with the unnamed buyer, and the deal is subject to the buyer obtaining certain minimum financing. The number of vessels acquired may end up less than seven, depending on the level of financing the buyer can obtain. Anastasios Margaronis, president of Diana Containerships, commented: “We believe that the transaction reflects attractive sale terms for the vessels in the current market, which will further strengthen the company’s balance sheet"
9. Tweaking Liability Laws
Hong Kong’s government continues to keep the maritime sector abreast of the latest international developments with a proposal to tweak legislation on shipowners’ liability to bring them in line with changes at the IMO level. The government said in a press release that it is proposing to amend Schedule 2 to the Merchant Shipping (Limitation of Shipowners Liability) Ordinance (Cap. 434) to incorporate the latest liability limits adopted by the IMO in the Convention on Limitation of Liability for Maritime Claims into local legislation. The proposed amendments are scheduled to be tabled at the Legislative Council on 11 October.
10. Augmented Reality on Ships
Satcoms and tech firms are producing smartglasses to build an Augmented Reality (AR) wearable solution for maritime service technicians. With AR already established as an efficiency-enhancing tool for business and industrial applications, the project is a proof of concept that will show the potential for AR to support professionals installing and servicing equipment on ships. By enabling AR, they are exploring how the digital and physical world can be blended together to create even better user experiences. Smartglasses will become a solution for installation technicians in the field.

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


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