Pacific Maritime Magazine - Marine Business for the Operations Sector

Above Board

Maritime news from the seven seas


November 1, 2017

On September 8, the long-awaited BWM Convention officially came into force. The new rule means Ballast Water has to be treated before it’s offloaded from vessels, in order to stop invasive species from being transferred into non-indigenous waters. BIMCO recently released its Shipmaster’s Ballast Water Manual that outlines what protocols must be followed.

Deadly Disasters and Other Incidents

The master and chief mate aboard the Atlantic freighter were reportedly found to be intoxicated and responsible for the grounding of the vessel near the Swedish port of Oskarshamn. The two were subsequently arrested and charged in connection with the incident.

Near Nome, Alaska, a person aboard the Xue Long<</i>/strong> Chinese research vessel had to be medevaced by the US Coast Guard after suffering a broken arm.

Despite being medevaced off the Agios Fanourios bulker vessel, while it was transiting from Abijan to Durban, two crewmen reportedly passed away after contracting malaria.

In Nova Scotia, the Harbour Queen 1, a stern-wheeler dinner cruise vessel lost propulsion. Even though she dropped anchor, the ship had to be towed away from the rocks. Meanwhile, nearby vessels scooped up the more than 30 passengers whose evening plans went awry as a result.

In the Netherlands near Werkendam, the Tarsis cement tanker-barge collided with the ferry Gorinchem X<</i>/strong>. The ferry’s two crew people lost control during dense fog. The Tarsis sustained minor damage but the ferry’s bow was stoved-in.

In the Philippines, the ro/ro ferry Maria Matilde crashed into the island of Tablas. The vessel hit a rock formation during heavy rains, and its bow was severely damaged. At least 87 passengers were injured.

An unlucky chain of events resulted in a barge and a tanker colliding on the Volga-Baltic Sea Canal near Kurdyug, Russia. The barge #3428, being towed by the BT-Petrokrepost tug, collided head-on with the Balt Flot 3 after the tanker had given way to a passing cargo vessel. While the tanker suffered damage below the waterline, thankfully, there were no injuries and no fuel was released into the environment.

Piracy Pulse

At Campha Inner Anchorage in Vietnam, bandits were able to get inside the paint store aboard an anchored bulk carrier while it was undergoing cargo operations. The duty crew were able to raise the alarm, but the robbers were still able to get away with some ship’s stores.

Three crew members aboard an anchored containership were beaten up by a group of pirates armed with iron bars, knives and a gun at Conakry Anchorage, Guinea. The bandits were able to get their hands on ship’s stores before making their getaway.

In another ship’s property-taking incident, this time, near Pulau Aur, Malaysia, a group of four marauders carrying knives and a gun, were able to get aboard a LPG carrier that was underway and escape with their loot.

Odds and Ends

Energy-efficient engines, exhaust gas scrubbers and a host of state-of-the-art passenger amenities are part of the newest cruise ship for Viking Cruises named Viking Sun. Built by Fincantieri, it’s the fourth in the 930-passenger series for the cruise line. Viking plans to add another four vessels between 2018 and 2022. In addition, Viking Cruises recently revealed plans to build the world’s first liquid hydrogen-fueled cruise ship.

The first full cruise season is underway at the Panama Canal. It’s expected the 2017-2018 season will see about 235 cruise ships transit the Panamax and Neopanamax Locks.

A 28 percent reduction in carbon emissions per TEU has been achieved by the DP World London Gateway Port. A combination of deploying hybrid-electric shuttle carriers, the reduction of energy use in buildings, as well as overall better recording of energy use contributed to the improvements that occurred during 2016 over 2015.

Kathy Smith writes for global maritime trade journals and provides marketing copy to maritime businesses worldwide. She can be reached at


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