Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 04/02/2019
1. Maersk Clarifies Position
Maersk has clarified its position on UK cadets and its commitment to the UK’s flag system. It will stop taking cadets from the UK, as well as South Africa. “All cadets will be given the opportunity to complete their contractual training period to qualify as an Officer of the Watch, enabling them to meet international employment terms,” a spokesperson for Maersk said. Regarding the UK flag, contrary to reports carried by Splash and trade union Nautilus International, the Maersk official that there were no changes on the cards.
2. Armed Militia Seizes Ship
A Singapore-flagged Aframax tanker has been seized by private militia with AK-47 machine guns in the Cameroon. The vessel Barents Sea, with 26 crew, was seized at the Sonara refinery in Limbe, according to Singapore-based ship management company Eastern Pacific Shipping. The company claims the action was undertaken by local charterer DSC Marine in clear violation of the law. “Eastern Pacific Shipping condemns this act of unprovoked aggression and strongly urges the Cameroonian government to enforce its security forces to safely and immediately release the vessel and the 26 crew on board.”
3. Famous Shipping Name Steps Down
One of the most famous names in shipping is to step down. Paddy Rodgers will relinquish his role as CEO at tanker giant Euronav this year, the Belgian company revealed in an update this morning. Rodgers has been with Euronav for the past 18 years. A recruitment process for a new CEO is underway with Rodgers remaining in his position until a successor is appointed. With Rodgers at the helm he grew the company from a family operation with 17 vessels to become the largest crude tanker shipping line in the world with 73 ships and a dual listing.
4. Bulkers Sit Off China
Dozens of ships carrying coal and iron ore to China are stuck outside ports waiting to unload, according to shipping data, with traders saying harbour authorities are taking longer than usual to clear the imports with customs officials. Refinitiv data showed on Friday that more than 300 dry-bulk freighters in total are currently sitting idle, waiting to deliver into China. While dry-bulk ships carry many different commodities, most affected were those carrying coal and iron ore from Australia, according to the data and two bulk traders.
5. Massive Drug Seizure
Police in Cape Verde seized nearly ten tonnes of cocaine and arrested 11 people on a Russian vessel docked in the capital, the police said on Friday, in the largest single drug haul in the island country’s history. An Atlantic archipelago of 500,000 people off Africa’s west coast, Cape Verde has long tried to tackle gangs trafficking Latin American cocaine to Europe via West Africa. The 9.5 tonnes of cocaine were seized overnight after the ship, which was traveling to Morocco from South America, docked at the port of Praia for legal reasons following the death of a crew member, the judiciary police said in a statement.
6. Olga Maersk Fire
A fire broke out in the engine room on board Maersk’s Panamax containership Olga Maersk last week. The incident happened while the vessel was en route from Panama to Cartagena. An official press release from the operator of the ship Hamburg Süd said: “We regret to advise that on January 29th a fire in the engine room on board the vessel “Olga Maersk” was reported while the vessel was on route from Panama to Cartagena. All crew on board the vessel are safe and accounted for.” The fire, which was contained to the engine room, has been extinguished following fire fighting procedures, it said.
7. Panama Ejects Iranian Ships
Panama agreed to remove from its Ship Registry some 60 Iranian vessels to avoid being placed on a US Treasury blacklist. In 2016, some 60 Iranian vessels from Iran were flagged in Panama’s Ship Registry following the lifting of the economic restrictions imposed by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the US Treasury Department. The agency includes in the OFAC list, people and companies suspects of terrorism, money laundering or drug trafficking who are prevented from having any relationship with the United States.
8. K Line Waste Conversions
K Line and Kobe Steel are trialling a system that converts waste heat from the engine exhausts to generate electricity. The 91,000 tonne coal carrier Corona Youthful has been installed with a binary cycle power generation system which can generate up to 100kW of electric power from the main engine exhaust heat from the main engines. The electricity generated can be used as auxiliary power for the vessel instead of diesel generators. The system will be trialled over the next three years on the Corona Youthful to verify the durability and performance.
9. Port Embraces Internet of Things
A new Internet of Things (IoT) platform has been developed for the Port of Rotterdam Authority, and the first application for hydro/meteo conditions has now been put into operation. The system uses an extensive network of sensors to provide accurate and up-to-date water and weather data for the planning and management of shipping. The delivered hydro/meteo system obtains height of tide, tidal stream, salinity, wind speed, wind direction and visibility data via a combination of 44 sensors in the port, many prediction models, data from Rijkswaterstaat and astronomical calculations.
10. Daring Yacht Rescue
Frontier Jacaranda, a bulk carrier operated by NYK Bulkship (Atlantic) NV., rescued a distressed yachtsman on January 18 (local time) in the North Atlantic. While Frontier Jacaranda was navigating for Rotterdam, Netherlands, the vessel received a call from the UK’s Maritime Rescue Coordination Center. The ship immediately headed to the instructed area and rescued a British yachtsman. The individual was in good health and delivered to the Joint Rescue Coordination Center (JRCC) of the Republic of Cabo Verde on January 20.
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