Above Board

Maritime news from the seven seas


ExxonMobil reports in its 2017 The Outlook on Energy edition that by 2040, global demand is expected to jump about 25 percent higher than it did in 2015. The majority of demand is reportedly to come from non-OECD nations and economic-rapidly growing areas such as the Asia-Pacific region. Apparently 55 percent of energy demand growth will be in the power generation needed for digital devices and the way our lives are becoming more and more “plugged-in”.

Deadly Disasters and Other Incidents

In Indonesia, two seamen died while attempting to rescue crewmen from a foundering fishing vessel that lost power, eventually smashing into the hull of the Angelia 2 product tanker. Several of the Angelia 2’s crew had jumped into the fishing vessel to help before the beleaguered vessel exploded. Several others were injured as a result.

Still in Indonesia, the ferry Zahro Express suffered a catastrophic fire. Reportedly, the engine caught fire some 20 minutes after the vessel left Muara Angke Port in Jakarta bound for Tidung Island. First count after the accident initially occurred tallied 23 who had perished, with 17 injured. The Captain was detained due to reports that he might have been first to abandon ship.

Philips Publishing Group

A mariner aboard an adrift 27-foot crab boat had to be rescued by the local Coast Guard, after he became disoriented while transiting the area of Bellingham Bay.

Near Port Sulphur, Louisiana, a hand injury sustained aboard the E.R. Calais containership resulted in a 46-year-old man being medevaced.

A pressurized object was responsible for severely injuring two crewmen aboard the United Ambassador transiting near Port Arthur, Texas. One man sustained a blow to the head that resulted in unconsciousness and the other’s nose was broken.

Piracy Pulse

In Venezuela, at Jose Anchorage, a duty AB aboard an anchored LPG tanker was taken hostage, held at knifepoint and tied up and while a band of six pirates helped themselves to ship properties and then took off. Luckily, the AB was able to get free and subsequently the ship’s alarm was raised.

In the Philippines, near Basilan Island, a cargo ship that was underway, suffered damage from several gunshot as two speed boats carrying six bandits chased and fired on the vessel until the alarm was raised and maneuvers were taken to speed up. The ship managed to avoid capture.

Ship properties were taken from an anchored bulk carrier in Samarinda Indonesia, despite the alarm being raised. During the brazen robbery, a crewman was tied to the foremast. Once the alarm sounded, the thieves made their getaway in a waiting speed boat.

Odds and Ends

Earlier this month, the Seaspan Swift, a new Seaspan Ferries Corporation (SFC) ferry entered service. The 148.9m vessel can accommodate up to 59 trailers. Running on diesel, LNG and batteries, Seaspan Swift and her sister vessel, Seaspan Reliant, are the first new ships to be added to the ferry fleet since 2002.

The Northern Sea Route has seen its first vessel able to transport heavy lift ship-to-shore cranes. The HHL Valparaiso carried two of the massive 61m height x 92 m width cranes, each weighing 820 metric tonnes. The equipment was fastened to the Ice Class E3 vessel from both partially above and below deck.

Violating the Act to Prevent Pollution from Ships (APPS) by two Greek shipping companies has resulted in a hefty $2.7 million in corporate penalties. Each of the companies has been ordered to make restitution by paying their share to the Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary and both are under a five-year probation that restricts them sending vessels to US Ports until they’ve carried out their financial obligations.

Have questions?

Could be about news, trends, basic industry terms, ‘how-it’s-done’ or something you’re observing in your own industry sector. Send them to maritimewriter@gmail.com and I’ll do my best to answer them, either by email or in one of my upcoming columns (where first name-only references will be used).


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