Above Board

Maritime news from the seven seas


The jury is still out on the use of LNG, at least as far as the European Commission is concerned, although the outlook is more positive than negative. A preliminary study carried out by the Commission’s Directorate-General for Mobility and Transport, DNV-GL and PwC, has shown that although using LNG addresses the growing EU general emissions reduction movement and the required adherence to low-sulfur content in ECA zones, there are still concerns about profitability for shipping companies. The lack of LNG bunkering infrastructure is also a major obstacle. No doubt mulling over the use of LNG is continually on the minds of many stakeholders worldwide.

Deadly Disasters and Other Incidents

In New Zealand, the Kea Harbor ferry struck a wharf, injuring 17 passengers and one crewmember who had to be taken to local medical centers for treatment. The ferry was carrying 61 people and its bow suffered major damage in the incident.

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Cattle numbering in the hundreds had to swim for their lives after the vessel the animals were being transported on off the Oman coast, capsized and sank. All crew were rescued.

At the Port of Hedland in Western Australia, two crewmembers from the M/V Happy Buccaneer ended up with very serious leg injuries after being pinned between an industrial lifting sling and a bulkhead while operations where underway to move a stack of four load spreaders with a crane.

Near Oregon Inlet, North Carolina, a crewman aboard the freight ship Dalian Express had to be medevaced due to an eye injury he suffered while performing a valve change in the engine room.

A routine job of cleaning the holds and refueling got out of hand for three crewmen who suffered chemical burns while working aboard the cargo ship Almasi near the Columbia River Bar.

Piracy Pulse

In Malaysia, crew aboard a product tanker sailing near Pulau Aur were taken hostage by a group of seven gun- and knife-wielding pirates who stole gasoline cargo, some crew properties and even cash before leaving the ship. The crew were subsequently released unharmed.

Amazingly, even under threat of alerted authorities, 10 armed pirates who had boarded a berthed vessel located at the Belawan Port of Indonesia, made their getaway with several ship items.

At the Vung Tau Anchorage in Vietnam, a duty Able Seaman was brazenly pursued by five armed pirates brandishing several knives and long pipes. Although the AB was able to escape into a secured area, and the crew was subsequently mustered and the alarm raised, the thieves were still able to take some of the stores from the paint locker before disappearing with their loot.

World Firsts

The oil and gas sector now has its first lifejacket purpose-made for offshore personnel who perform tasks at height or rope access work. The lifejacket is designed to work with a fall-arrest harness for either on- or offshore work and has several safety features that will help prevent accidental deployment according to developer Survitec Group.

Eniram, a Finnish energy management technology and data analytic services company, has announced they are the first to provide a boil-off management tool for the LNG Sector. The new tech tool is meant to measure real-time onboard boil-off data.

Harmony of the Seas, Royal Caribbean International’s newest Oasis-class ship is being touted as the world’s largest to date. The 227,000-GRT vessel will have 16 guest decks, a passenger-carrying capability of 5,479, and is expected to launch in April of 2016.

Harvey Gulf International Marine, LLC has become the first owner/operator to carry out a truck-to-ship LNG bunkering operation for the M/V Harvey Energy, the first dual-fuel offshore vessel in North America. In addition, the company is building the first LNG facility for marine fueling at its own Port Fourchon, Louisiana facility.

Odds and Ends

Never try to navigate the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park without a pilot, found the master of the bulk carrier China Steel Developer after he was fined approximately $6,600 USD for neglecting to engage the proper human aide to assist the ship through Hydrographers Passage, a known mandatory pilotage region.

In the UK, the Chief Mate aboard the Shoreway dredger was found liable for the death of a woman after he navigated outside a deepwater channel near Felixstowe to an area where pleasure vessels typically congregate. The woman had been sailing with her husband and two dogs aboard their yacht Orca when the head-on collision occurred.


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